|U.S. Senator from New York|
From: January 26, 2009 - Present
|Predecessor||Hillary Rodham Clinton|
|Successor||Incumbent (no successor)|
|U.S. Representative from New York's 20th District|
From: January 4, 2007 – January 26, 2009
|Predecessor||John E. Sweeney|
Kirsten E. Gillibrand (born December 9, 1966) (pronounced JILL-uh-brand) is a first-term United States senator from New York. Gillibrand served in the United States House of Representatives from January 3, 2007, to January 26, 2009, when she resigned to become a U.S. Senator. Gillibrand was appointed by NY Governor David Paterson on January 23, 2009 to the United States Senate for the term ending January 3, 2013, to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Hillary Clinton. This appointment took effect upon her resignation from the House of Representatives on January 26, 2009. Gillibrand took the oath of office on January 27, 2009. At forty-two years old she is the youngest member of the Senate.
Gillibrand is one of the most aggressive fund-raisers in the country, and prospective opponents have dropped out of the 2010 primary. Harold Ford, a former Congressman from Tennessee who lost a Senate bid there after voters reacted against his notoriously corrupt Memphis family was a notable challenger of her in the race until he dropped his bid to challenge her.
From an upstate New York family long involved in politics, she graduated from Dartmouth College (1988) and UCLA Law School. At Dartmouth learned Chinese, spent a semester in China, and wrote a senior project on the topic, "The History of Tibetan Resistance to the Chinese Occupation of Tibet 1950-1988."
She is a Catholic, and is married with two children. Her husband, Jonathan Gillibrand, is a British citizen who works in finance.
Gillibrand worked for both Republicans and Democrats, and clerked for a senior federal judge --a Reagan appointee-- before working for a major law firm in New York City.
Gillibrand was elected in 2006 after defeating incumbent Republican John E. Sweeney. She won by 6% of the vote.
Gillibrand is considered a Blue Dog Democrat for her conservative credentials, including a 100% rating from the NRA, supports offshore drilling, and voted against the $700 billion bailout. However, she supports civil liberties and has a 100% rating from the ACLU. She supported redeployment of troops from Iraq to Afghanistan, and voted with the Bush administration and against her own party leadership on funding the Iraq war. She favors the English language-only movement as well as abortion rights; she has supported balanced budget amendments, and opposed amnesty for illegal immigrants.
Gillibrand is considered one of the Democratic Party's most active and aggressive grass roots campaigners, using her huge $4.6 million war chest to garner 65% of the vote in the 2008 election.
Gillibrand was nominated to fill the seat vacated by Hillary Clinton after she became Secretary of State in the Obama Administration. Caroline Kennedy, daughter of the late president, had been considered the frontrunner until she mysteriously dropped out of the contest on Jan. 22. The choice of Gillibrand was a stunning blow to liberal forces in New York, who never dreamed she would displace their favorites. "She is on the right-wing of our Congressional delegation," said Danny Cantor, a liberal leader. "People change, and we’re going to be optimistic and hope she does too."
Many staffers and supporters of Clinton have joined her team, which proposes to raise $70 million for her statewide reelection campaigns in 2010 and 2012. Gillibrand is not well known in New York City, the liberal stronghold where Democratic primaries are won and lost. However she has already amassed a huge war chest and no major opponents for the primary are in sight.
After countless stories of election fraud by the group ACORN, Kirsten Gillibrand was one of seven Democrats that voted to continue funding ACORN. The vote failed and ACORN was stripped of funding in the Senate  Bill Wilson of Americans for Limited Government said, "The ACORN Housing Corporation has long been pushing the very loose-lending policies that helped destroy the housing industry. And now it has been exposed for working with prostitutes, as well. Yet, these seven Senators [Gillibrand] have knowingly voted to keep sending taxpayer money to a highly corrupt organization of pushers and pimps," 
- ↑ See Joe Conason, "Kirsten Gillibrand. Really? Why New York Gov. David Paterson chose a senator with conservative views that clash with his own." Salon Jan. 23, 2009
- ↑ Quoted in Michael Powell and Raymond Hernandez, "Gillibrand Is a Centrist With a Tenacious Style," New York Times Jan. 24, 2009
- ↑ Senate denies ACORN funding, Politico, September 14, 2009
- ↑ ALG Condemns 7 Senators,Politico Mafioso, September 16, 2009