Birthdate: June 16, 1969
Birth Place: New York, NY, United States
Residence: Chatham, VA
First Elected: 2010
District: District 5
Robert Hurt was born in New York City and grew up in Chatham, Va., where he now resides. He earned a bachelor's from Hampden-Sydney College and a law degree from Mississippi College.
Hurt worked as a prosecutor for the commonwealth's attorney's office in Chatham. He was elected to the Chatham Town Council and began a private law practice in 1999. He was elected in 2001 to the Virginia House of Delegates.
Hurt was elected to the state Senate in 2007, replacing retiring Sen. Charles Hawkins, who endorsed Hurt to succeed him. In 2010, he won his seat in the U.S. House from Virginia's rural 5th District, ousting one-term Democratic Rep. Tom Perriello.
Hurt's brother, Charles Hurt, is Washington bureau chief and political columnist for the New York Post.
Hurt and his wife, Kathy, have three children.
When Robert Hurt won election to the Virginia House of Delegates in 2001, he was part of a large Republican victory that swelled the GOP's state House majority to 63 seats in the 100-member chamber, a record at the time, just two years after Republicans achieved their first outright House majority in Virginia's nearly 400-year history.
Hurt served in the state House for six years and won a state Senate seat in 2007. In late 2008, as President Barack Obama led a Democratic sweep of Virginia that included Tom Perriello's election to the state's 5th District U.S. House seat, Hurt began calling in favors from GOP leaders and raising cash for his 2010 bid for Congress.
He targeted Perriello, who was elected in 2008 by just 727 votes. Perriello's support for Obama-backed energy and health care reforms made him a marked man in the rural district stretching from Charlottesville south to the North Carolina line where tobacco farms and small-town textile and furniture manufacturers were reeling from the recession.
Hurt courted votes from social conservatives, anti-tax activists and libertarians who comprised an active and vocal tea party movement emerging in the district. Early on, some tea party groups considered Hurt insufficiently conservative and part of the GOP Richmond establishment for voting in 2004 for a budget-balancing $1.4 billion annual tax increase advocated by then-Gov. Mark Warner, a Democrat.
Despite this lack of tea party support, Hurt won the 2010 primary and was elected to the seat that November.
Since his arrival in Washington, Hurt's voting record has been much more to the tea party's liking. He has voted with his party's conservative leadership 94 percent of the time, according to OpenCongress.org, a nonpartisan congressional watchdog.
He voted in 2012 in support of Rep. Paul Ryan's proposed budget plan, and he supports repealing the 2010 health care reform law, dubbed "Obamacare" by Republicans.
Hurt supports a line item veto and a balanced budget amendment. He believes life begins at conception and he opposes abortion. He supports both gun-ownership and property rights, and opposes federal efforts to expand its right of eminent domain.
Source: Associated Press