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Dave Brat: 11 Things to Know

Eric Cantor is a Republican from Virginia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Eric Cantor is a Republican from Virginia. (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.

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