At a Glance
- Career History: President, Roscoe Bartlett & Associates (1974-1986); Research Manager, IBM (1967-1974); Research scientist, Johns Hopkins University (1962-1967)
- Birthday: June 3, 1926
- Hometown: Moreland, Ky.
- Alma Mater: University of Maryland, M.S. (1949); Ph.D. (1952); Columbia Union College, B.A. (1947)
- Spouse: Ellen
- Religion: Seventh Day Adventist
- Committees: Armed Services ; Science, Space and Technology ; Small Business
- DC Office: 2412 Rayburn House Office Building, 202-225-2721
- District Offices: Frederick, 301-694-6674; Cumberland, 301-724-3105; Westminster, 410-857-1115; Hagerstown, 301-797-6043
- Web site
Path to Power
Bartlett was born in Kentucky in 1926. He was raised in poverty, with a tenant-farmer father who kept loaded shotguns for security and who refused to accept government handouts during the New Deal. Bartlett's politics were shaped by his father's independence and his strict upbringing in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
A descendant of Declaration of Independence signer and New Hampshire Gov. Josiah Bartlett, Roscoe Bartlett attended church-affiliated Columbia Union College near Washington, D.C., before pursuing a doctorate in physiology, which he received from the University of Maryland in 1952. Bartlett made a fortune as a research scientist and is credited with 20 patents. Nineteen of those patents, mostly involving life-support equipment, belong to the federal government.
Bartlett aligns closely with most of the classic GOP platform. He's against gun control, abortion rights, affirmative action and big government. When the House took up the "Contract With America" after Republicans recaptured the majority in 1994, Bartlett was the only Republican to vote for all 10 bills associated with it. He has become more independent in recent years, voting with his party 93 percent of the time during the 111th Congress.
Bartlett's independent streak often appears when considering Republican-backed bills expanding the federal government's reach, including during the Bush years when he rejected the No Child Left Behind Act, which set federal standards in public schools.
Bartlett has a few close Democratic allies on energy issues including Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), who co-founded the Peak Oil Caucus with Bartlett, and Sen. Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.), who has called Bartlett a leader on energy.
In 2010, Bartlett lended campaign help to Andy Harris, who would join Bartlett as the sole GOP members of the state's delegation. The support came despite Harris' campaign goal of instituting a 12-year limit on House and Senate tenures.