Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 9, 2016

Dave Brat: 11 Things to Know

Dave Brat defeated Eric Cantor, above, in Tuesday's primary. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Dave Brat, a Randolph-Macon College professor, clobbered House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., in Tuesday night’ s primary.

Here are a few fun facts about the largely unknown Republican who took out the majority leader:

1. Brat is the chairman of the Department of Economics and Business at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Va. He has been a professor there since 1996, teaching courses including Macroeconomics, Economic Development and Economic Justice.

2. Brat has a Ph.D. in economics from American University, which he earned in 1995. He also has a master’s in Divinity from the Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, N.J., and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Hope College in Holland, Mich., according to his CV.

3. He wants term limits for all members of congress, he told Glenn Beck.

4. Brat is a talented competitor in “pickleball,” a sport that Mike Carter, a former colleague at Randolph-Macon College, described to Richmond Magazine as “a racquetball sport that combines the elements of badminton, tennis and table tennis, and is played on an area that’s the size of a badminton court.”

5. Many of Brat’s academic publications focus on the intersection of religion and economics. For example, in 2011, he published, “God and Advanced Mammon – Can Theological Types Handle Usury and Capitalism?” according to his official CV. He runs a program called “The Moral Foundation of Capitalism” at Randolph-Macon College.

6. Brat wants a balanced budget amendment and either a flat or fair tax, he wrote in an op-ed Sunday.

7. When Brat met his wife, Laura, she was dog-sitting for the under secretary of Treasury for George H.W. Bush in exchange for room and board, and working at an interior design firm, she told Richmond Magazine.

8. He lives in Henrico, Virginia, with his wife and his two children, Jonathan and Sophia.

9. Brat previously ran for office in 2011, when he forged a bid for the Republican nomination for the 56th District seat in the Virginia House of Delegates. He was one of six candidates in the running. A four-person Republican Committee charged with picking the nominee passed him over in favor of Peter Farrell, The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported at the time.

10. He coached the Randolph-Macon College Debate team to win the 11th Annual intercollegiate Wachovia Wells Fargo Foundation Ethics Bowl.

11. He co-wrote a paper called “An Analysis of the Moral Foundations in Ayn Rand,” also according to his CV.

Colin Diersing contributed to this report.

  • dw1206

    If the people in the Media would actually do some homework, they would realize that Cantor’s loss was not about the Tea Party or immigration. It was about people being sick and tired of Political Players who are more interested in the voices of their financial backers and Party ideologies than actually listening to all the people in their home districts. The People in the 7CD have spoken, yes. Money will not buy our Democracy!

  • pancheetah

    Maybe you already saw this.
    I thought it raises a similar issue – the insider/outsider difference.

  • Dave

    What a laugh. The Koch brothers spend hundreds of millions now every election cycle buying democracy so they can impose oligarchy instead. And the GOP madly dances to the Koch tune.

  • don76550

    Unlike Cantor, Brat supports your gun rights. Cantor claimed to but recently voted against him. There are a lot of gun owners is his district and gun owners vote.

  • Organix

    While those of the liberty school realize that coercive power keeps the peace, they work to minimize government’s overall coercive power.

  • lido jmartin

    ethics bowl and debate team are very different things

  • Magic Newton

    Since those who preach from collectivism’s altar constantly conjure up an ever-shifting mirage of utopian illusions, their followers tend to have a difficult time understanding spontaneous events and natural order.

  • Frank

    and that has nothing to do with this primary’s winner

  • Dave

    Brat received Koch money via a Tea Party PAC.

  • GardenGrl

    Aha! Read Salon, sounds like they have this guy’s number (and it’s not pretty). Hope the writer wins. There is a good reason why libertarian “paradises” always fail, and I really do like my country, and don’t want it to fail. GOP, get your heads out of your arses!

  • GardenGrl

    Read Salon, they have this guy’s number.

  • Stan

    Oh my god! He wrote a paper that had to do with Ayn Rand! He must be vilified and demonized! We simply cannot risk having someone with leanings towards freedom, capitalism and libertarianism running wild in Washington DC!

  • Stan

    Really? How much? From who, specifically? And how does that amount stack up against what Cantor spent?

  • Dave

    What Cantor spent is irrelevant. Brat is a Koch puppet. The Koch-funded machine is supporting him both through direct donations and gray-money support. Read this for more:

  • Stan

    Pure liberal nonsense. From your own link:

    “One of the reasons – if not the biggest reason – Eric Cantor lost was that he totally underestimated the dark money machine that was the real force behind David Brat campaign. The media is making it seem like Brat was some sort of underdog, but in reality, he’s strapped to the hilt with billionaire support and billionaire money.”

    So on the one hand, he says Cantor lost because Brat was “strapped to the hilt” with billionaire money. On the other hand, you say it’s irrelevant that Cantor outspent Brat 10 to 1. Nice try, but that doesn’t pass the laugh test.

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