From 1983 until 2011, this Democratic Party politician served Virginia's ninth congressional district in the United States House of Representatives. In the 1970s and early 1980s, he was a member of the Senate of the Commonwealth of Virginia.
After earning his bachelor's degree from Roanoke College, he graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law.
While in Congress, he established and co-chaired the House Internet Caucus and penned digital media legislation.
He was born and raised in Abingdon, Virginia. In 2006, just shy of his sixtieth birthday, he married fifty-year-old Amy Hauslohner; it was a first marriage for both.
He and fellow Democrat Gerry Connolly were both elected to the United States Congress as representatives from Virginia.