10 Things You Didn't Know About Chuck Schumer

Schumer praised Sotomayor during the confirmation hearings.

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1. Charles "Chuck" Ellis Schumer was born on Nov. 23, 1950, in Brooklyn, N.Y. His mother was a homemaker active in the community, and his father was the owner of an exterminating business.

2. Schumer graduated as valedictorian from James Madison High School. He scored a perfect 1600 on the SAT.

3. In high school, he competed on It's Academic, a television quiz show, where he helped his team win the New York City finals by identifying the pigment in white paint, titanium dioxide.

4. Although he once considered a career in organic chemistry, Schumer gave up that career path after pulling an all-nighter to complete a 60-step chemistry experiment.

5. In 1971, he earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College. He continued on to Harvard Law School, where he earned his J.D. in 1974.

6. He wrote his senior thesis on ways Congress could function more efficiently.

7. At 23, he ran for the New York State Assembly, becoming the youngest member of the Legislature since Theodore Roosevelt.

8. Schumer passed the New York bar exam in 1975 but never practiced law.

9. In 1980, he married Iris Weinshall. They have two daughters.

10. As the chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Administrative Oversight, Schumer led the investigation surrounding the 2007 firing of eight U.S. attorneys.


  • Senate.gov
  • Congress.org
  • Bioguide.congress.gov
  • Washington Post
  • New York Times