As a small business owner frustrated by taxes on Pennsylvania’s small businesses, Pat Toomey entered politics when he decided he had enough.
But his interest in politics really began when Toomey was in college and Ronald Reagan was president of the United States.
“Ronald Reagan’s optimism in America and his belief in American exceptionalism have greatly inspired me,” Toomey said.
In the 1990s, Toomey volunteered his time helping out with a congressional race in Lehigh Valley, and eventually became the representative to the U.S. Congress in the 15th district, in which Lehigh Valley is located.
Toomey served in that position for three terms, a limit he imposed on himself, said former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, who endorsed Toomey in State College in September. That self-imposed term limit, and Toomey’s follow-through with it, were qualities Ridge said he admired in the Republican Senate candidate.
Before becoming the 15th congressional district representative, Toomey also served on the Allentown Government Committee from 1994 to 1996.
Toomey said his motivation comes from the people he represents. Campaigning across the state and listening to the concerns of the residents of Pennsylvania keeps him focused on his work, he said.