At a Glance
- Career History: President, Club for Growth (2005 to 2009); U.S Reresentative (1999 to 2005); CEO, Toomey Enterprises Inc., (since 1991); Investment Banker/Financial Consultant (1984 to 1990)
- Birthday: Nov. 17, 1961
- Hometown: Allentown, Pa.
- Alma Mater: Harvard University, B.S., 1984.
- Spouse: Kris
- Committees: Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs ; Budget ; Commerce, Science and Transportation ; Joint Economic
- Washington Office: B-40B Dirksen Senate Office BuildingWashington, D.C. 20510Phone: (202) 224-4254
Path to Power
Toomey grew up in East Providence, R.I. His father laid cable for an electric company, while his mother helped raise the family's six children by working as a secretary at the local parish. "I was raised in a Democratic household," Toomey recalls. "My dad was a card-carrying union worker and a Democratic super voter."A gifted student, Toomey earned scholarships to a Catholic private high school, LaSalle Academy, and then Harvard University. He also supplemented his scholarships with part-time jobs.
As a teenager in the 1970s he was turned off by what he observed as "a downright anti-American streak" in liberalism. "What I found very offensive was the 'blame America first' crowd, the people who suggested that there was a moral equivalence between the United States and the Soviet Union at the time, which struck me as absurd."
During his six years in Washington, Toomey racked up a solidly conservative voting record, earning him a 97 percent lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union.
Toomey is an opponent of abortion with a socially-conservative voting record.But most of his House focus was on economic issues such as tax and spending cuts. "We've got three parties in Congress," he once cynically quipped, "Republicans, Democrats and Appropriators."
In April 2009, Toomey's former employer, the Club for Growth, endorsed him in the Pennsylvania Senate race,and will once again be a key source of funding. Former Indiana Rep. Chris Chocola (R) now runs the club.
Given that the battle in Pennsylvania will be portrayed as a litmus test of whether a candidate carrying a conservative message can win in a blue state, Toomey is likely to attract the support of a number of other conservative groups, and should be able to raise money from small donors among the conservative grassroots.