Pat Toomey

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Pat Toomey
Pat Toomey.jpg
U.S. Senate, Pennsylvania
In office
Term ends
January 3, 2017
Years in position 4
PredecessorArlen Specter (R)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
First electedNovember 2, 2010
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Campaign $$19,860,138
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Representative, United States House of Representatives
Bachelor'sPolitical Science, Harvard University, 1984
Date of birthNovember 17, 1961
Place of birthZionsville, Pa.
Net worth(2012) $2,977,025
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Pat Toomey (b. November 17, 1961, in Zionsville, Pa.) is a Republican member of the U.S. Senate from the state of Pennsylvania. Toomey was first elected to the Senate in 2010 and took office in January of 2011. His term will expire on January 3, 2017. Toomey will come up for re-election in 2016. In May 2013, former Rep. Joe Sestak (D), whom Toomey defeated in the 2010 U.S. Senate general election, filed his candidacy paperwork with the Federal Election Commission, in order to pursue a rematch in 2016.[1]

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Toomey is one of the most reliable Republican votes, meaning he can be considered a safe vote for the Republican Party in Congress.


Below is an abbreviated outline of Toomey's academic and political career:[2]

Committee assignments

U.S. Senate


Toomey serves on the following committees:[3]


Toomey served on the following Senate committees:[4]

  • Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
    • Subcommittee on Securities, Insurance and Investment
    • Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection Members
    • Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation and Community Development
  • Budget
  • Finance
    • The Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight
    • The Subcommittee on Healthcare
  • Economic Committee


Toomey served on the following Senate committees:[5]

Key votes

113th Congress


The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 114 out of the 3,036 introduced bills (3.8 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session.[6] The Senate confirmed 13,949 out of 18,323 executive nominations received (76.1 percent). For more information pertaining to Toomey's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[7]

National security

John Brennan CIA nomination

Nay3.png Toomey voted against confirmation of John Brennan as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The nomination was confirmed by the Senate on March 7, 2013, with a vote of 63 - 34. Most Democrats supported the nomination, while Republicans were somewhat divided with roughly one-third supporting the nomination.[8]


Farm bill

Nay3.png On February 4, 2014, the Democratic controlled Senate approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[9] It passed the Senate with a vote of 68-32. The nearly 1,000-page bill reformed and continued various programs of the Department of Agriculture through 2018. The $1 trillion bill expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that will kick in when prices drop; however, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[10] Toomey voted with 22 other Republican senators against the bill.

2014 Budget

Nay3.png On January 16, 2014, the Democratic-controlled Senate approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[11][12] The Senate voted 72-26 for the 1,582 page bill, with 17 Republicans and 55 Democrats voting in favor of the bill.[12] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[13] It increased the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel by 1 percent, increased Head Start funding for early childhood education by $1 billion, reduced funding to the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency, and left the Affordable Care Act without any drastic cuts.

Toomey voted with 25 other Republican members against the bill.[11][12]

Government shutdown
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Nay3.png During the shutdown in October 2013, the Senate rejected, down party lines, every House-originated bill that stripped the budget of funding for the Affordable Care Act. A deal was reached late on October 16, 2013, just hours before the debt ceiling deadline. The bill to reopen the government, H.R. 2775, lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[14] The final vote on H.R. 2775 was 81-18, with all 18 votes against the bill from Republican members. Toomey voted with the Republican Party against the bill.[15]

No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013

Nay3.png Toomey voted against H.R.325 -- No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013. The bill passed the Senate on January 31, 2013, with a vote of 64 - 34. The purpose of the bill was to temporarily suspend the debt ceiling and withhold the pay of members of Congress until a budget could be passed. The vote largely followed party lines with Democrats overwhelmingly supporting it and many Republicans in opposition to the bill.[8]


Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.
Mexico-U.S. border

Yea3.png Toomey voted for Senate Amendment 1197 -- Requires the Completion of the Fence Along the United States-Mexico Border. The amendment was rejected by the Senate on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 39 - 54. The purpose of the amendment was to require the completion of 350 miles of fence described in the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 before registered provisional immigrant status may be granted. It would also require 700 miles of fence be completed before the status of registered provisional immigrants may be changed to permanent resident status. The vote followed party lines.[8]

Social issues

Background checks on gun sales

Yea3.png On April 17, 2013, the U.S. Senate took a vote on and defeated a measure that would have expanded federal background checks for firearms purchases.[16] The vote was 54-46, with supporters falling six votes short of the required 60-vote threshold.[17] Toomey was one of the 4 Republican Senators who voted in favor of the measure.[18]

Violence Against Women (2013)

Yea3.png Toomey voted for S.47 -- Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013. The bill was passed by the Senate on February 12, 2013, with a vote of 78 - 22. The purpose of the bill was to combat violence against women, from domestic violence to international trafficking in persons. All 22 dissenting votes were cast by Republicans.[8]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal cliff

Yea3.png Toomey voted for the fiscal cliff compromise bill, which made permanent most of the Bush tax cuts originally passed in 2001 and 2003, while also raising tax rates on the highest income levels. The bill was passed in the Senate by an 89 - 8 vote on January 1, 2013.[19]


On The Issues Vote Match

Pat Toomey's Vote Match results from On The Issues.
See also: On The Issues Vote Match

On The Issues conducts a VoteMatch analysis of elected officials based on 20 issue areas. Rather than relying on incumbents to complete the quiz themselves, the VoteMatch analysis is conducted using voting records, statements to the media, debate transcripts or citations from books authored by or about the candidate. Based on the results of the quiz, Toomey is a Hard-Core Conservative. Toomey received a score of 15 percent on social issues and 94 percent on economic issues.[20]

On The Issues organization logo.

The table below contains the results of analysis compiled by staff at On The Issues.

On The Issues Vote Quiz[21]
Economic Issues Social Issues
Issue Stance Issue Stance
Legally require hiring women & minorities Opposes Abortion is a woman's unrestricted right Strongly Opposes
Expand ObamaCare Opposes Comfortable with same-sex marriage Strongly Opposes
Vouchers for school choice Strongly Favors Keep God in the public sphere Strongly Favors
Absolute right to gun ownership Strongly Favors Human needs over animal rights Favors
Higher taxes on the wealthy Strongly Opposes Stricter punishment reduces crime Favors
Support & expand free trade Favors Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens Strongly Opposes
Stricter limits on political campaign funds Neutral Maintain US sovereignty from UN Strongly Favors
Prioritize green energy Strongly Opposes Expand the military Strongly Favors
Stimulus better than market-led recovery Strongly Opposes Stay out of Iran Strongly Opposes
Privatize Social Security Strongly Favors Never legalize marijuana Strongly Favors
Note: Information last updated: April 19, 2015.[20] If you notice the rating has changed, email us.

National security

Letter to Iran

On March 9, 2015, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) wrote a letter to Iran's leadership, warning them that signing a nuclear deal with the Obama administration without congressional approval was merely an "executive agreement." The letter also stated that "The next president could revoke such an executive agreement with the stroke of a pen and future Congresses could modify the terms of the agreement at any time." The letter was signed by 47 Republican members of the Senate. Toomey was one of the 47 who signed the letter. No Democrats signed it.[22]

The letter caused intense backlash from both the Obama administration and the public. Vice President Joe Biden said of the letter, "In thirty-six years in the United States Senate, I cannot recall another instance in which senators wrote directly to advise another country — much less a longtime foreign adversary — that the president does not have the constitutional authority to reach a meaningful understanding with them."[23] On Twitter, the hashtag "47Traitors" became the top trending topic in the world, and a debate raged as to whether the 47 who signed the letter were traitors or patriots.[24]

American response in Syria

See also: United States involvement in Syria

Toomey supported President Barack Obama's proposed military strike against Syria. "I think there is great danger if we do nothing. Chemical and biological weapons fall into a unique category because of the scale in which they kill people indiscriminately...If we don't act now, what kind of message does that send to Iran and North Korea?" Toomey said.[25]

Drones filibuster

See also: Rand Paul filibuster of John Brennan's CIA Nomination in March 2013

On March 6, 2013, Senator Rand Paul (R) led a 13-hour filibuster of President Obama's CIA Director nominee, John Brennan. Paul started the filibuster in order to highlight his concerns about the administration's drone policies. In particular, Paul said he was concerned about whether a drone could be used to kill an American citizen within the United States border without any due process involved. Paul and other civil liberties activists were critical of President Obama for not offering a clear response to the question. A total of 14 senators joined Paul in the filibuster -- 13 Republicans and one Democrat.[26][27][28]

Toomey was one of the 13 Republican senators who joined Paul in his filibuster.[29][30]

According to the website Breitbart, 30 Republican senators did not support the filibuster.[31][32]

The day after the filibuster, Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to Paul, responding to the filibuster. Holder wrote, "Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil? The answer to that is no."[33]

Background checks amendment

Following Toomey's April 2013 co-sponsorship of a Senate bill aimed at strengthening the federal background check policy for prospective gun owners, Quinnipiac University Polling Institute surveyed registered Pennsylvania voters on Toomey's Senate performance. Although the firearm control legislation was ultimately unsuccessful, the poll showed Toomey's job approval rating soared to a record high level of 48 percent, with 30 percent of voters expressing disapproval. This is compared to Toomey's 11 point approval to disapproval differential (43-32) rating from the prior month.[34] Furthermore, voters from both major parties said they thought more favorably of him as a result of his bipartisan efforts on the issue of gun control by a margin of 54-12 percent.[35] The Quinnipiac poll surveyed 1,235 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.8 percentage points.[34]



Toomey will next come up for re-election in 2016. The race drew an early challenger in May 2013 when former Rep. Joe Sestak (D), whom Toomey defeated in the 2010 U.S. Senate general election, announced he would pursue a rematch in 2016.[1]


U.S. Senate race 2016 - Hypothetical match-up poll
Poll Pat Toomey (R) Joe Sestak (D)Kathleen Kane (D)UndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
Public Policy Polling
November 22-25, 2013
Public Policy Polling
November 22-25, 2013
Quinnipiac University Poll
May 30-June 4, 2013
AVERAGES 42% 26.33% 15.33% 16.67% +/-3.5 806
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to


On November 2, 2010, Pat Toomey won election to the United States Senate. He defeated Joe Sestak in the general election.[36]

U.S. Senate, Pennsylvania General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngPat Toomey 51% 2,028,945
     Democratic Joe Sestak 49% 1,948,716
Total Votes 3,977,661

Full history

Campaign donors

Fundraising events

The below chart from Find The Best tracks the fundraising events Toomey attends.

Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Comprehensive donor history

Comprehensive donor information for Toomey is available dating back to 2002. Based on available campaign finance records, Toomey raised a total of $19,860,138 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 22, 2013.[40]

Pat Toomey's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2010 U.S. Senate (Pennsylvania) Won $17,155,694
2002 U.S. House (Pennsylvania, District 15) Won $1,631,237
2000 U.S. House (Pennsylvania, District 15) Won $1,073,207
Grand Total Raised $19,860,138


Toomey won election to the U.S. Senate in 2010. During that re-election cycle, Toomey's campaign committee raised a total of $17,155,694 and spent $16,958,449.[41]

Personal Gain Index

Congressional Personal Gain Index graphic.png
See also: Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress)

The Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress) is a two-part measurement that illustrates the extent to which members of the U.S. Congress have prospered during their tenure as public servants.
It consists of two different metrics:

PGI: Change in net worth

See also: Changes in Net Worth of U.S. Senators and Representatives (Personal Gain Index) and Net worth of United States Senators and Representatives
Net Worth Metric graphic.png

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by, Toomey's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $1,722,050 to $4,232,000. That averages to $2,977,025, which is lower than the average net worth of Republican Senate members in 2012 of $6,956,438.47. Toomey ranked as the 46th most wealthy senator in 2012.[42] Between 2004 and 2012, Toomey's calculated net worth[43] increased by an average of 3 percent per year. Between 2004 and 2012, the average annual percentage increase for a member of Congress was 15.4 percent.[44]

Pat Toomey Yearly Net Worth
YearAverage Net Worth
Growth from 2004 to 2012:21%
Average annual growth:3%[45]
Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.[46]
The data used to calculate changes in net worth may include changes resulting from assets gained through marriage, inheritance, changes in family estates and/or trusts, changes in family business ownership and many other variables unrelated to a member's behavior in Congress.

PGI: Donation Concentration Metric

See also: The Donation Concentration Metric (U.S. Congress Personal Gain Index)

Filings required by the Federal Election Commission report on the industries that give to each candidate. Using campaign filings and information calculated by, Ballotpedia calculated the percentage of donations by industry received by each incumbent over the course of his or her career (or 1989 and later, if elected prior to 1988). Toomey received the most donations from individuals and PACs employed by the Securities & Investment industry.

From 1997-2014, 19.84 percent of Toomey's career contributions came from the top five industries as listed below.[47]

Donation Concentration Metric graphic.png
Pat Toomey Campaign Contributions
Total Raised $33,321,046
Total Spent $28,104,654
Top five industries that contributed to campaign committee
Securities & Investment$1,767,353
Lawyers/Law Firms$917,693
Real Estate$844,229
% total in top industry5.3%
% total in top two industries10.06%
% total in top five industries19.84%


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Toomey was a "rank-and-file Republican" as of August 2014.[48] This was the same rating Toomey received in July 2013.[49]

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[50]

Toomey most often votes with:

Toomey least often votes with:

Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Lifetime voting record

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Toomey missed 26 of 1,033 roll call votes between January 2011 and July 2014. This amounts to 2.5 percent, which is worse than the median of 2.0 percent among the lifetime records of senators currently serving as of July 2014.[51]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Toomey paid his congressional staff a total of $1,927,174 in 2011. He ranked 12th on the list of the lowest paid Republican senatorial staff salaries and ranked 14th overall of the lowest paid senatorial staff salaries in 2011. Overall, Pennsylvania ranked 5th in average salary for senatorial staff. The average U.S. Senate congressional staff was paid $2,529,141.70 in fiscal year 2011.[52]

National Journal vote ratings

See also: National Journal vote ratings

Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Click the link above for the full ratings of all members of Congress.


Toomey ranked 22nd in the conservative rankings in 2013.[53]


Toomey ranked 4th in the conservative rankings in 2012.[54]


Toomey ranked 18th in the conservative rankings in 2011.[55]

Voting with party

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus.


Toomey voted with the Republican Party 90.6 percent of the time, which ranked 11th among the 45 Senate Republican members as of August 2014.[56]


Toomey voted with the Republican Party 92.0 percent of the time, which ranked 10th among the 46 Senate Republican members as of June 2013.[57]


Toomey and his wife, Kris, have three children.

Official "Candy Man"

Toomey is the 114th Congress' "Candy Man." As "Candy Man," Toomey is in charge of keeping the Senate's "Candy Desk" stocked. Toomey said, "The Candy Desk duty is Mounds of responsibility. I campaigned for this assignment on the platform of life, liberty and the pursuit of Peeps and hope Pennsylvania's treats will sweeten the bitter partisan atmosphere."[58]

Members of Congress will be able to enjoy "Pennsylvania's finest chocolate and deliciousness to ensure a surplus of sweets," Toomey said.[58]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Pat + Toomey + Pennsylvania + Senate

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Pat Toomey News Feed

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See also

External links


  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named rematch16
  2. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "Pat Toomey," accessed October 24, 2011
  3. United States Senate, "Committee Assignments of the 114th Congress," accessed February 17, 2015
  4. Congressional Quarterly, "Senate Committee List," accessed January 22, 2013
  5. Vote Smart, "Pat Toomey Vote Smart profile"
  6. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  7. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Project Vote Smart, "Pat Toomey Key Votes," accessed October 17, 2013
  9., "H.R. 2642 (Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013)," accessed February 12, 2014
  10. New York Times, "Senate Passes Long-Stalled Farm Bill, With Clear Winners and Losers," accessed February 12, 2014
  11. 11.0 11.1 Politico, "Senate approves $1.1 trillion spending bill," accessed January 20, 2014
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 U.S. Senate, "January 16 Vote," accessed January 20, 2014
  13. Roll Call, "House Passes $1.1 Trillion Omnibus," accessed January 20, 2014
  14. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  15., "H.R. 2775 As Amended," accessed October 31, 2013
  16. NPR "Senate Rejects Expanded Background Checks For Gun Sales" accessed April 19, 2013
  17. Fox News "Background check plan defeated in Senate, Obama rips gun bill opponents" accessed April 19, 2013
  18. NPR "Historically Speaking, No Surprise In Senate Gun Control Vote" accessed April 19, 2013
  19. U.S. Senate, "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff," accessed January 4, 2013
  20. 20.0 20.1 On The Issues, "Pat Toomey Vote Match," accessed April 19, 2015
  21. The questions in the quiz are broken down into two sections -- social and economic. In social questions, liberals and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while conservatives and populists agree in choosing the more restrictive answers. For the economic questions, conservatives and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while liberals and populists agree in choosing the more restrictive answers.
  22. The Wall Street Journal, "Text of GOP Senators’ Letter to Iran’s Leaders on Nuclear Talks," March 9, 2015
  23. Fox News, "Firestorm erupts over GOP letter challenging Obama's power to approve Iran nuclear deal," March 10, 2015
  24. Ut San Diego, "Traitors or patriots? Senator's letter to Iran creates firestorm," March 11, 2015
  25. The Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era, "Sen. Toomey supports military strike against Syria," September 5, 2013
  26. CNN, "Rand Paul says he's heard from White House after filibuster," March 7, 2013
  27. USA Today, "Rand Paul filibuster ranks among Senate's longest," March 7, 2013
  28. ABC News, "Rand Paul Wins Applause From GOP and Liberals," March 7, 2013
  29. The Blaze, "Here Are All the GOP Senators That Participated in Rand Paul’s 12+ Hour Filibuster… and the Ones Who Didn’t," March 7, 2013
  30. Los Angeles Times, "Sen. Rand Paul ends marathon filibuster of John Brennan," March 7, 2013
  31. Breitbart, "AWOL: Meet The GOP Senators Who Refused to Stand With Rand," March 7, 2013
  32. Politico, "Rand Paul filibuster blasted by Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham," March 7, 2013
  33. Washington Post, "Eric Holder responds to Rand Paul with ‘no’," March 7, 2013
  34. 34.0 34.1 Quinnipiac University, "April 26, 2013 - Pennsylvania Voters Say Run Pittsburgh Marathon, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Many Voters Angry At U.S. Senate Gun-Control Vote," April 26, 2013
  35. Politico, "Poll: Pat Toomey poll numbers rise," April 26, 2013
  36. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  37. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 5, 2002," accessed March 28, 2013
  38. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 7, 2000," accessed March 28, 2013
  39. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 3, 1998," accessed March 28, 2013
  40. Open Secrets, "Career Fundraising for Pat Toomey," accessed April 22, 2013
  41. Open Secrets, "Pat Toomey 2010 Election Cycle," accessed October 24 2011
  42. OpenSecrets, "Toomey, 2012," accessed January 14, 2014
  43. This figure represents the total percentage growth from either 2004 (if the member entered office in 2004 or earlier) or their first year in office (as noted in the chart below).
  44. This number was found by dividing each member's total net worth growth percentage by the number of years included in the calculation.
  45. This figure represents the total percentage growth divided by the number of years for which there are net worth figures for each member.
  46. This figure was calculated using median asset data from the Census Bureau. Please see the Congressional Net Worth data for Ballotpedia spreadsheet for more information on this calculation.
  47., "Sen. Pat Toomey," accessed October 2, 2014
  48. Gov Track, "Pat Toomey," accessed August 29, 2014
  49. Gov Track, "Patrick Toomey," accessed July 5, 2013
  50. OpenCongress, "Sen. Pat Toomey," accessed August 29, 2014
  51. GovTrack, "Pat Toomey," accessed August 29, 2014
  52. LegiStorm, "Pat Toomey," accessed August 6, 2012
  53. National Journal, "2013 Vote Ratings," February 21, 2013
  54. National Journal, "TABLE: Senate Conservative Scores by Issue Area," February 21, 2013
  55. National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," accessed February 23, 2012
  56. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  57. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  58. 58.0 58.1, "Pat Toomey: The Senate's 'Candy Man'," accessed January 9, 2014
Political offices
Preceded by
Arlen Specter
U.S. Senate - Pennsylvania
Succeeded by