At a Glance
- Career History: Military contractor for MPRI (2005-2007), High-school teacher (2004-2005), Army officer (1982-2004)
- Birthday: February 7, 1961
- Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia
- Alma Mater: B.A. from University of Tennessee, Master's in political science from Kansas State University, Master of Military Arts and Sciences from U.S. Army Commnad and General Staff Officer College
- Spouse: Angela West
- Religion: Christian
- DC Office: 1708 Longworth HOB, Washington, DC 20515; Phone: (202) 225-3026; Fax: (202) 225-8398
Path To Power
West was raised in a military household in Atlanta. He graduated from the University of Tennessee before obtaining two master's degrees, the first in political science from Kansas State University and the second in military arts from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.
Upon enlisting, he spent 22 years in the Army, rising to the rank of lieutenant colonel. He served in the Gulf War, and in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, earning a Bronze Star and three Meritorious Service Medals.
West argues liberal policies result in enslaving citizens by making them dependent on goverment help and creating a culture of victimhood and welfare. He contrasts this to the conservative reliance on the private sector, which he says empowers individuals and serves as the country's true economic motor.
"We have a class warfare that's going on. We have a producing class and you've got an entitlement class," he said in a 2009 speech. "These people are living amongst us," he added of the latter group.
In his 2010 House race, West has attracted support from prominent conservatives, most notably former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. Conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart has said he believes West is "presidential material."