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Mark Kirk

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Mark Kirk (1959-) is a U.S Representative (R-Illinois 10th district), first elected in 2000.[1] He is a candidate for the U.S. Senate. [2] A commander in U.S. Navy intelligence, he deployed to Afghanistan in December 2008, and has foreign affairs experience both in the executive branch and in non-governmental organizations. He has positioned himself as supporting a "Suburban Agenda" that is "pro-defense, pro-personal responsibility, pro-environment, and pro-science," and identifies as a moderate member of the Republican Tuesday Group.

His district is a suburb north of Chicago. He serves on the U.S. House Appropriations Committee and the bipartisan House US-China Working Group.

He is an adviser to the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in North Korea.

Early career

After law school, he joined the staff of his predecessor in Congress, John Porter. He then worked for the International Finance Corporation at the World Bank, and then became Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary for inter-American Affairs at the U.S. State Department from 1992-93. Next, he practiced law at Baker & McKenzie, and then joined the staff of the U.S. House International Relations Committee.


He has served in the Afghanistan, Iraq, Haiti and Bosnia, and received a Navy “Intelligence Officer of the Year” in 1999 for his combat service in Kosovo. He was first member of Congress to serve in an "imminent danger zone" since 1942 when he deployed as a reservist to Afghanistan in December 2008.

In Afghanistan, he was assigned, for three weeks, to International Security Assistance Force Regional Command South, in Kandahar, developing a counternarcotics plan for southern Afghanistan. [3]

There are conflicting reports, including statements he made on the House floor, of his work with the Central Intelligence Agency, either as a Naval Intelligence officer detailed to CIA, or during his State Department work.



  1. About Mark, U.S. House of Representatives
  2. Kirk for Senate
  3. Phil Ponce (5 January 2009 Location: Chicago, IL), WTTV "Chicago Tonight" - Transcript