Mike Lee was born in Mesa, Ariz., and now resides in Alpine, Utah. He attended Brigham Young University where he earned a bachelor's and a law degree.
Lee is an attorney who grew up in a household where the law was frequently discussed over the dinner table. Lee's brother, Thomas Lee, serves on the Utah Supreme Court, and his father, Rex Lee, served as solicitor general under President Ronald Reagan. Mike Lee would often join his father during arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Lee served as general counsel for former Gov. Jon Huntsman before resigning to clerk for Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito. Lee had previously clerked for Alito on the U.S. Court of Appeals.
Lee was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2010.
Lee and his wife, Sharon, have three children.
Mike Lee is a political newcomer who won the 2010 Republican primary after garnering, along with one other candidate, more votes than incumbent Sen. Bob Bennett at the state GOP convention. After securing the GOP nomination, he easily won the general election in heavily conservative Utah.
Lee didn't declare his candidacy until January 2010, but he was able to quickly win over delegates to the GOP state convention by running to Bennett's right. Lee became a favorite of the tea party crowd by saying he would rein in government spending, call for a moratorium on earmarks and adhere more closely to the Constitution than any of his seven rivals.
As a freshman senator, Lee has joined a vocal group of tea party senators to push for reduced government spending and a lower national debt. He has worked to repeal the 2010 health care reform bill backed by President Barack Obama, which is highly unpopular in Utah.
In the spring of 2012, Lee protested a recess appointment by President Obama by voting against every presidential appointment.
Lee is a constitutional scholar who once served as former Gov. Jon Huntsman's general counsel. He also clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito and he frequently recites constitutional minutiae from memory.
Lee says he fought in his private practice to keep government off his clients' backs. That includes working for EnergySolutions Inc., a nuclear waste disposal firm that he has represented in its regulatory battles with the state.
Although Lee has promised to respect the Constitution, he has also said he would like to see it amended. Lee says he believes constitutional term limits are needed, as is a balanced budget amendment. Lee has said he favors repealing the 17th Amendment, which provides for the direct election of U.S. senators. Previously, senators were chosen by state legislatures.
Committee Assignments: Judiciary; Energy and Natural Resources; Foreign Relations; Joint Economic
American Conservative Union Rating: 100
Americans for Democratic Action Rating: 10
Mike Lee is not up for re-election in 2014.
(Last updated by The Associated Press on June 24, 2014.)