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Alex Mooney


Alexander X. “Alex” Mooney is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from West Virginia’s Second Congressional District, first elected in November 2014.

Mooney was born June 7, 1971, in Washington, D.C. His mother, Lala, was born and raised in Cuba, where she and other members of her family were once jailed for opposing the communist regime. Descended from a family of Irish immigrants, his father, Vincent, grew up in Long Island, New York.

Mooney received his B.A. in philosophy from Dartmouth College, where he played football and rugby. There he made his first bid for public office, running unsuccessfully for the New Hampshire legislature in 1992.

After graduating from college, Mooney served as staff assistant to former Congressman Roscoe G. Barlett, a Tea Party Republican representing Maryland’s Sixth District. Later he became a legislative analyst for the Republican Conference of the U.S. House of Representatives. From 2005 to 2012, Mooney was executive director of the National Journalism Center, which conducts a Washington internship program for conservative-minded young people who aspire to journalism careers.

Mooney has run for public office in three states. After his unsuccessful bid for a seat in the New Hampshire legislature, Mooney served three terms in the Maryland State Senate. He was elected in 1998 and re-elected in 2002 and again in 2006. Four years later, in 2010, Democrat Ronald N. Young, the mayor of Frederick, defeated him 51 percent to 49 percent. Mooney chaired the Republican Party in Maryland from late 2010 to 2013.

In March 2012, Mooney filed as a candidate in the 2014 Republican primary for Maryland’s Sixth District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Later he withdrew from the race because he was still Barlett’s part-time outreach director. House ethics rules prohibit congressional staffers from running for office.

Subsequently, Mooney moved to Charles Town and declared his candidacy for West Virginia’s Second District seat being vacated by Republican incumbent Shelley Moore Capito as she ran for U.S. Senate. Despite accusations of being a “carpetbagger,” Mooney bested six opponents in the GOP primary and went on to defeat Democrat Nick Casey in the general election, 49 percent to 47 percent. In his successful House campaign Mooney emphasized his support for conservative fiscal and social values, including lower taxes, less government spending, pro-life legislation and protecting the rights of gun owners.

Mooney was reelected in 2016, 2018, and 2020. As a result of the 2020 census, West Virginia lost a congressional seat, and Mooney faced off against David McKinley in the 2022 Republican primary for the newly consolidated Second District. Mooney won the primary and the general election. A week after his 2022 general election win, he announced he would step down from his congressional seat at the end of his sixth term and run for the U.S. Senate. In the May 2024 Republican primary election for this seat, he was defeated by current Governor Jim Justice by 34 percentage points.

Written by James E. Casto