|Date Of Birth:||15 August 1938|
|Place Of Birth:||St. Louis, Missouri|
|Alma Mater:||California State University, Los Angeles|
|Term Start:||January 3, 1991|
|Residence:||Los Angeles, California|
Maxine Waters (born Maxine Moore Carr on August 15, 1938) has served as a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1991, representing California's 35th congressional district (map). She resides in the Hancock Park area of Los Angeles, which is approximately six miles west of downtown. She is the most senior of the twelve African American women currently serving in the United States Congress.
Her husband, Sidney Williams, is a former U.S. Ambassador to the Bahamas.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Waters graduated from Vashon High School in St. Louis and attended Los Angeles State College (now California State University, Los Angeles). Prior to her entry into politics, she was a teacher and a volunteer coordinator in the Head Start program.
Waters entered the California State Assembly in 1976. While in the assembly she worked for divestment of state pension funds from any businesses active in South Africa, a country then operating under the racial policy of apartheid. Waters ultimately helped frame successful legislation within the guidelines of the divestment campaign's Sullivan Principles. Waters eventually ascended to the position of Democratic Caucasus Chair for the Assembly.
Upon the retirement of Augustus F. Hawkins in 1990, Waters was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for the 29th Congressional District with over 79% of the popular vote; she has been re-elected each time (now in the 35th California Congressional District), with at least 70% of the popular vote.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California's_29th_congressional_districthttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California's_35th_congressional_district (Significant parts of the pre-1990 29th California Congressional District were folded into the newly defined 35th California Congressional District after California gained seven additional seats in the House following the 1990 U.S. census.)
Following a 1996 San Jose Mercury article alleging the complicity of the CIA in the Los Angeles crack epidemic of the 1980s, Waters called for an investigation into the matter. In her request, Waters asked whether "U.S.-government paid or organized operatives smuggled, transported and sold it to American citizens." The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) announced it had failed to find any evidence to support the original story. The Los Angeles Times also concluded after its own extensive investigation that the allegations were not supported by evidence. The author of the original story was eventually transferred to a different beat and removed from investigative reporting. Following these post-publication investigations, Waters read into the Congressional Record a memorandum of understanding in which former President Ronald Reagan's CIA director rejected any duty by the CIA to report illegal narcotics trafficking to the Department of Justice.
As a Democratic representative in Congress, Waters was a superdelegate to the 2008 Democratic National Convention. She endorsed Democratic Senator Hillary Clinton for the party's nomination in late January 2008, granting the New York Senator nationally-recognized support that some suggested would "make big waves."  Subsequently, however, Waters switched her endorsement to Sen. Barack Obama, by then insurmountably ahead in the pledged delegate count, on the final day of primary voting. 
Waters voted against the Iraq War Resolution, the 2002 resolution that funded and granted Congressional approval to possible military action against the regime of Saddam Hussein. She has remained a consistent critic of the subsequent war. Waters asserted in 2007 that President George W. Bush was trying to "set [Congress] up" by continually requesting funds for an "occupation" that is "draining" the country of capital, soldier's lives, and other resources. In particular, she argued that the very economic resources being "wasted" in Iraq were those that might provide universal health care or fully fund President Bush's own "No Child Left Behind" education bill. (The latter has come under consistent criticism for including state and district mandates without federal funding to cover them.) Additionally, Waters, representing a congressional district whose median income falls far below the national average, argued that patriotism alone had not been the sole driving force for those U.S. service personnel serving in Iraq. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California's_35th_congressional_district Rather, "many of them needed jobs, they needed resources, they needed money, so they're there." In a subsequent floor speech, Waters told her colleagues that Congress, lacking the votes to override the "inevitable Bush veto on any Iraq-related legislation," needed to "better [challenge] the administration's false rhetoric about the Iraq war" and "educate our constituents [about] the connection between the problems in Pakistan, Turkey, and Iran with the problems we have created in Iraq." A few months prior to these speeches Waters became a cosponsor of the House resolution to impeach Vice-President Dick Cheney for making allegedly "false statements" about the war.
In May 2008, Waters told Shell Oil President John Hofmeister at the House Judiciary Committee's Task Force on Competition Policy and Antitrust Laws, that if he did not guarantee reduced gasoline prices in exchange for Congress allowing the oil industry to drill where it wished, she would favor nationalizing American petroleum companies. In a widely reported exchange, she stated: "Guess what this liberal will be all about, this liberal will be all about socializing....taking over and the government running all of your companies."
Waters was included by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington ("CREW") among its 2005 list of the thirteen "Most Corrupt Members of Congress" list and on the 2006 list for "her exercise of this power to financially benefit her daughter, husband and son." She was not included on subsequent lists.  
After the Los Angeles Times published allegations of nepotism against Waters, Waters filed a request with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to deny a renewal of the broadcast license for KTLA-TV, a station owned by the newspaper. Claiming that "The Los Angeles Times has had an inordinate effect on public opinion and has used it to harm the local community in specific instances," Waters requested that the FCC force the paper to either sell its station or risk losing that station's broadcast rights. Such challenges, according to Broadcasting & Cable Magazine, "raise the specter of costly legal battles to defend station holdings. ... At a minimum, defending against one would cost tens of thousands of dollars in lawyers' fees and probably delay license renewal about three months." Waters' petition was ultimately unsuccessful.
During the Los Angeles riots of 1992, Waters appeared on television as a commentator. In defense of the people that looted stores and damaged property, Waters said "If you call it a riot it sounds like it was just a bunch of crazy people who went out and did bad things for no reason. I maintain it was somewhat understandable, if not acceptable. So I call it a rebellion."