Senator Cortese Issues Statements on Being Named Senate Majority Whip, Chair of Transportation and Ethics Committees, Other Committees

Senator Dave Cortese (D-San Jose) released the following statement after being named Majority Whip of the California Senate, a role central to guiding legislative priorities and ensuring the passage of critical legislation.

“I am honored and humbled to be named Majority Whip by Senate President pro Tempore Mike McGuire, for whom I deeply respect and who shares my values. I will work tirelessly to advance the priorities of the Senate Democratic Caucus as we tackle California’s greatest challenges. These include creating quality jobs, building climate resilience, expanding affordable housing for all, and growing housing, shelter solutions, and critical support for people experiencing homelessness. I look forward to working alongside Senate Leader McGuire and his leadership team.”

Statement on becoming Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee

“Transportation is about far more than roads and rails. It's about creating pathways for opportunity for people seeking jobs, education, and relationships outside their own neighborhoods. It's about building connections that let us visit loved ones more easily, and it's fundamentally about safety—ensuring quick access for the driving public and for emergency services when needed. As the newly appointed Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, I am thrilled for the opportunity to enhance California’s world-renowned transportation system. Our mission extends from completing pivotal legacy projects to pioneering solutions for the fiscal challenges and climate impacts ahead, including preparations for events like the LA Olympics, the development of the Trans Bay Terminal, and the expansion of Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) to San Jose. In this era of rapid technological advancement, our priority is also to create a future of autonomous vehicles that protects everyone in California.”

Statement on becoming Chair of the Senate Ethics Committee

“Stepping into the Chair for the Senate Ethics Committee, I’m honored to serve in this role that demands a strong sense of duty and integrity. This committee is a guardian of ethical conduct within the Senate as it upholds the Standards of Conduct for Senators, officers, and employees. We will ensure that the Upper House operates with the highest moral compass. Through rigorous review, education, and orientation, I will foster an environment of unwavering ethical standards. The California Senate will remain transparent, accountable, and honorable.”

Statement on remaining on the Senate Labor, Public Employment and Retirement Committee

“Continuing my seat on the Labor Committee, I will remain dedicated and thankful for the chance to support working families at a crucial time as we foster the emerging green industry, promising equitable, good-paying jobs. My co-authorship of Senate Bill (SB) 150 last year demonstrates this commitment to creating jobs that can sustain a family while also enhancing California’s ability to sustain in a changing climate. My work has consistently focused on protecting workers across sectors—from establishing groundbreaking safety standards on motion picture sets to securing the first-ever statewide bargaining agreement for minor league baseball players. As technology reshapes our lives, we must keep our workforce at the forefront, advocating for everyone's right to a job that supports a family and contributes to a thriving, equitable economy.”

Statement on becoming a member of the Senate Insurance Committee

“As a new member of the Senate Committee on Insurance, I'm deeply committed to addressing Californians' insurance-related challenges, especially in rural areas prone to wildfires where insurance has become increasingly difficult to navigate. Our priority is keeping insurance companies operating in California while ensuring that rates remain affordable for consumers. I am dedicated to protecting Californians during life's most challenging moments when insurance is needed.”

Statement on becoming a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee

“As an incoming member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I am honored to represent the agrarian roots of my community and my personal heritage as a third-generation farmer. I represent 15,000 agricultural workers in Santa Clara County alone, and Senate District 15 will soon encompass the agricultural heartlands of San Martin, Morgan Hill, and Gilroy. I look forward to collaborating closely with farmers, farmworkers, and the broader agricultural and environmental community to address their unique challenges and promote the advancement of California’s agricultural sector.”

Statement on remaining a member of the Senate Housing Committee

“As I continue my service on the Senate Housing Committee, I am committed to using every appropriate tool and resource to expedite the construction of all types of housing, and to hasten the end of homelessness across our communities. We must address the housing crisis with urgency. Every Californian deserves access to safe, affordable housing.”

Statement on remaining a member of the Senate Education Committee

“As I continue my role on the Education Committee, I remain committed to championing quality education and protecting funding. We must look out for our most vulnerable youth, ensuring they are safe, nourished, and engaged in learning. Our focus must also extend to enhancing the workforce pipeline that leads to quality, sustainable careers, preparing our students not just for today's challenges, but for tomorrow's opportunities.”

Below is the complete list of Senator Cortese’s Committee and Caucus Memberships:

Senator Cortese Serves In The Senate Democratic Leadership:

  • Majority Whip, responsible for monitoring legislation and securing votes for legislation on the floor. 

Senator Cortese Serves On The Following Senate Committees:

  • Senate Transportation Committee, Chair
  • Legislative Ethics Committee, Chair
  • Senate Agriculture Committee
  • Senate Education Committee
  • Senate Housing Committee
  • Senate Insurance Committee
  • Senate Labor, Public Employment and Retirement Committee
  • Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture
  • Joint Committee on Rules
  • Joint Legislative Audit Committee
  • Joint Legislative Committee on Emergency Management

Senator Cortese Serves On The Following Select Committees:

  • Senate Select Committee on Mental Health and Addiction
  • Senate Select Committee on Student Success
  • Senate Select Committee on Bay Area Transit
  • Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission

Senator Cortese Is A Member Of The Following Caucuses:

  • Technology and Innovation Caucus
  • Bay Area Caucus
  • Mental Health Caucus
  • Democratic Caucus
  • Outdoor Sporting Caucus
  • California Native American Legislative Caucus
  • Mental Health and Addiction Caucus
  • End Poverty Caucus

Senator Dave Cortese represents Senate District 15, which encompasses San Jose and much of Santa Clara County in the heart of Silicon Valley. Visit Senator Cortese’s website: