Andy Barr

Andy Barr

KENTUCKY's 6th DISTRICT

Barr Votes for Financial CHOICE Act

2017/06/08

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) today voted in favor of H.R. 10, the Financial Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers, and Entrepreneurs (CHOICE) Act.  Congressman Barr is an original cosponsor of the legislation which overhauls the Dodd-Frank Act to expand economic opportunity, end taxpayer bailouts, and to increase penalties for financial fraud and crimes.

“I promised the people of central and eastern Kentucky that I would vote to roll back unnecessary regulatory overreaches, end taxpayer bailouts of too-big-to-fail banks, and to encourage economic growth in our communities,” said Congressman Barr.  “I have kept those promises and more by voting for the Financial CHOICE Act.  This legislation would provide much needed relief so that individuals, families, and entrepreneurs can access the capital they need to invest in homes and small businesses.  It will also hold Wall Street accountable by ending bailouts and imposing the toughest penalties in history for fraud and other financial crimes.”

“I applaud the leadership of Chairman Jeb Hensarling in shepherding this bill through the Financial Services Committee and passage in the House of Representatives.  I look forward to working with our colleagues in the Senate to turn these reforms into law.”

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Barr Statement on the Passing of Senator Jim Bunning

2017/05/27

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) issued the following statement on the passing of former Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning:

“Today, Kentucky mourns the loss of a true legend.  After a remarkable career in baseball, Jim Bunning could have gone anywhere and done anything.  He chose to come home to Kentucky where he dedicated his life to his family and to public service.  Throughout his entire career he remained a principled conservative and unrelenting fighter for the causes he believed in and for the people of the Commonwealth.  Today, Carol and I are thinking of and praying for his amazing wife Mary, their wonderful children and many grandchildren.”

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Barr and Tonko Introduce Horseracing Integrity Act with Growing Coalition of Support

2017/05/25

Congressman Andy Barr (R-KY) and Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY), the Co-Chairmen of the Congressional Horse Caucus, today introduced H.R. 2651, the Horseracing Integrity Act.  The legislation, an updated version of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, establishes an authority to create and implement a national uniform medication program with input from the horse industry.

“With growing momentum and support, the time has come for uniform medication rules in American horseracing,” said Congressman Barr.  “Uniform rules will ensure the integrity and competitiveness of American horseracing and lay the groundwork for the future success of this great American sport.  I am grateful for Congressman Tonko and our coalition for their work over the last two years to improve this legislation which has broadened our base of support and will help us to pass this bill into law.”

“I am excited to partner once again with Congressman Barr on this critical issue,” said Congressman Tonko. “A single, national approach to medication testing with strong independent oversight and enforcement is long overdue. This will help ensure the long-term viability of horseracing by bringing greater integrity to the sport and enhancing the care and welfare of horses. Much is at stake here, especially in regions like ours with long historic ties to an industry that contributes $4 billion to the New York economy each year, much of it in and around the Saratoga Race Course.”

Under existing law, the American horseracing industry labors under a diverse patchwork of conflicting and inconsistent rules governing medication policies and practices across dozens of different racing jurisdictions. This lack of uniformity in the rules of horseracing has impaired interstate commerce and undermined public confidence in the sport.

The Horseracing Integrity Act will encourage fair competition and a level playing field across state lines, assure full and fair disclosure of information to purchasers of breeding stock and to the wagering public and provide for the safety and welfare of horses, jockeys, and drivers.  This, in turn, will enhance the popularity and international competitiveness of American horseracing.

The legislation is supported by a growing coalition of individuals and organizations representing a broad spectrum of interests across the horse industry including: the Water Hay Oats Alliance, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Jockey Club, and Keeneland Association.  The bill received a major boost last month when it was endorsed by Frank Stronach and the Stronach Group, one of the world’s leading racetrack operators and suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering technology.

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Rep. Barr Reintroduces the TABS Act

2017/05/19

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) today reintroduced the Taking Account of Bureaucrats’ Spending (TABS) Act.  The legislation would make the budget of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) subject to congressional appropriations and therefore give Congress the power of the purse over this unaccountable agency, its regulatory overreaches, and lavish spending for the first time.

“I am reintroducing the TABS Act because the Bureau deserves the same scrutiny and the same checks and balances as any other federal agency,” said Congressman Barr.  “Congressional oversight and accountability will ensure that the Bureau stays true to its mission of consumer protection, and avoids politically motivated overreaches, wasteful spending, and unnecessary regulations.”

The CFPB is currently funded directly by the Federal Reserve with no oversight and little transparency.

In response to a question from Congressman Barr during a Committee on Financial Services hearing last year, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen confirmed that the Fed does not approve or even oversee the budget of more than $600 million a year it gives to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  Click here for video of the exchange.

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Rep. Barr Votes for the American Health Care Act

2017/05/04

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) today voted in favor of H.R. 1628, the American Health Care Act, legislation that will repeal most of Obamacare’s mandates, taxes, and regulations while making important reforms that will lower costs and expand access to care.

“Today is a great day for freedom in America,” said Congressman Barr.  “After seven years of broken promises, lost coverage, skyrocketing premiums, thousands of pages of regulations, tax penalties, collapsing co-ops, fewer jobs, and state exchanges which are now in a death spiral of fewer choices and rising costs – the House of Representatives has taken a critical step in the process that will finally repeal and replace Obamacare.  And we have done so in a way that provides multiple layers of protections for people with pre-existing conditions.”

“Since I first ran for Congress, I promised the people of the Sixth District that I would vote to repeal this broken law and replace it with reforms that will actually lower costs and expand access to care through patient-centered, market-based reforms.  The American Health Care Act accomplishes these goals and more.  It delivers the most important reforms to an entitlement program in American history, it cuts taxes by nearly $1 trillion, it protects life and redirects funds from Planned Parenthood to Community Health Centers, and it returns power from the federal government to the states and the people.”

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Barr Votes to Fund Kentucky Priorities

2017/05/04

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) today issued the following statement after voting for the Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2017, which funds the government through September 30, 2017: 

“I am disappointed that the funding bill put before Congress today does not do more to balance our budget, much less address our growing national debt.  I am equally frustrated that this bill fails to shift resources to the extent needed to rebuild our military to deter and respond to growing threats.  However, this legislation does deliver on many of our promises to the American people including to make a vital down payment on our national security, give our troops a well-deserved pay raise, substantially improve border security, and to fight the growing drug epidemic that has been devastating to Kentucky.”

“This bill also ensures that retired mine workers and their widows do not lose their health benefits because of the devastating impact of the Obama Administration’s War on Coal.  I have long advocated for a permanent fix to this problem and am glad that Congress is not turning its back on these hard working men and women who have powered the American economy.”

“We have a lot more work to do to get our country on the right track.  I am confident that we will continue to keep our promises to the American people as we work to repeal and replace Obamacare, reform our tax code, strengthen our military, and address our long term spending problem.”

Among other provisions, the legislation will:

  • Increase defense funding by over $25 billion over 2016 levels, including $1.5 billion to enhance border security and technology;
  • Provide a 2.1 percent pay increase for the members of the military;
  • Prohibit funding to house, transfer, or release Guantanamo Bay detainees;
  • Increase National Institutes of Health spending by $2 billion, providing $34.1 billion total, including specific increases for research on Alzheimer’s disease and the brain such as the research being done at the University of Kentucky Sanders-Brown Center on Aging;
  • Battle the national opioid epidemic by increasing funding for substance abuse prevention and treatment programs by more than $650 million and fully funding the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act;
  • Permanently fix the funding deficit for the health benefits of retired union mine workers;
  • Block any new funding for Obamacare, and maintain pro-life protections.

 

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Barr Reintroduces Portfolio Lending and Mortgage Access Act

2017/04/28

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) today reintroduced H.R. 2226, the Portfolio Lending and Mortgage Access Act.  The bill promotes affordable home financing and discourages the practices that led to the 2008 financial crisis and the resulting taxpayer bailouts of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and too-big-to-fail financial institutions.

“By expanding the definition of a ‘qualified mortgage’ to include mortgages that are held on portfolio, this legislation recognizes the fact that when a bank or credit union retains 100 percent of the downside risk of default on a loan, it has a strong incentive to ensure sound underwriting,” said Congressman Barr.  “This in turn, will expand access to mortgage credit and the American dream of homeownership without producing the risky originate to distribute practices that caused the financial crisis and led to taxpayer bailouts.  We passed this bill with strong bipartisan support in the last Congress, and I am hopeful with a new administration we will now be able to get this needed reform signed into law.”

The Portfolio Lending and Mortgage Access Act was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives during the 114th Congress with bipartisan support by a vote of 255 -174.

The legislation reforms the Qualified Mortgage rule imposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to allow banks and credit unions to hold mortgages in portfolio, therefore retaining 100 percent of the risk, to satisfy the requirements of the rule. 

The Independent Community Bankers of America reports that 73 percent of community bankers have decreased their mortgage business or completely stopped providing mortgage loans due to the expense of complying with the Qualified Mortgage regulation.

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Barr Applauds Introduction of Financial CHOICE Act

2017/04/27

Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06) released the following statement following introduction of H.R. 10, the Financial Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers and Entrepreneurs (CHOICE) Act. 

“We need the Financial CHOICE Act to undo the damage of Dodd-Frank, to give more Americans the opportunity to succeed, cut through unnecessary red tape, and to hold Wall Street accountable by ending bailouts and imposing greater penalties for financial fraud,” said Congressman Barr.  “I applaud Chairman Jeb Hensarling for introducing this needed legislation and I look forward to working with him and my colleagues on the Financial Services Committee to deliver relief to small community financial institutions and their customers in Kentucky.”

Congressman Barr is an original co-sponsor of the Financial CHOICE Act.  More information about the bill is available at: www.financialchoice.gop. 

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Frank Stronach Endorses Horseracing Integrity Act

2017/04/25

Today, Congressman Andy Barr (R-KY) announced the support of Frank Stronach for the Horseracing Integrity Act.  Congressman Barr plans to reintroduce the legislation, to create uniform medication standards across the 38 different racing jurisdictions in the United States.

“Today, horseracing in America took a great step forward,” said Congressman Barr.  “Frank Stronach, Founder and Honorary Chairman of North America's largest Thoroughbred racing company, The Stronach Group, announced his unqualified support for the Horseracing Integrity Act.  This bipartisan legislation, which I sponsored with Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY), will finally bring uniformity and independence to horseracing’s anti-doping program and no race day medication.”

“There are few people more committed to the future of horseracing in North America than Frank Stronach, a multiple Eclipse Award winner for Outstanding Breeder and Outstanding Owner.  To have someone of his stature endorse this legislation puts the Horseracing Integrity Act on a clear path toward success.” 

The Horseracing Integrity Act would create an independent anti-doping program to ensure that all racing states are playing by the same anti-doping rules, and that all racing jurisdictions are in step with international standards. Regulation of horse racing in the United States is highly fragmented among the 38 racing states, which has led to a wide disparity in the effectiveness of medication testing and enforcement.

The bill designates US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), a non-profit, private and independent organization, to run a nationwide program to protect the integrity of American horseracing.   Stronach emphasized that under the legislation, USADA should work together with state regulators and members of the horse racing industry to achieve the highest integrity at a reasonable cost.  We would work together to form an independent anti-doping authority with exclusive jurisdiction over the sport, creating uniform lists of permitted and prohibited substances and methods, a program for in- and out-of-competition testing programs, and the establishment of uniform sanctions for violations.  Importantly, the bill requires no federal funding.

The Stronach Group is one of the world's leading horse racetrack operators and suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering technology and owns racetracks including Santa Anita Park, "The Great Race Place", Pimlico Race Course, home of the legendary Preakness, and the spectacular Gulfstream Park, one of Florida's newest entertainment destinations.  The Stronach Group is a leading producer and distributor of televised horse racing programming and one of the world’s leading thoroughbred race horse breeders, having produced numerous Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup champions.

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Barr Votes to Reform SNAP Program

2013/09/20

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Congressman Andy Barr released the following statement after voting for H.R. 3102, the Nutrition Reform and Work Opportunity Act of 2013, which passed the House by a vote of 217-210:

“Today, I voted to restore accountability and much-needed fiscal responsibility to an important federal program that has grown to unsustainable levels.  These commonsense reforms to our food stamp program will achieve nearly $40 billion in savings, while increasing funding for food banks.  The bill will provide a full $725 billion in food assistance to families and children in need over the next ten years.  This legislation is the most compassionate policy because it encourages people who are capable of work to move from dependency to self-sufficiency.”

 

As passed by the House of Representatives, H.R. 3102 will implement several important reforms to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).   H.R. 3102 would protect the solvency of this important program by:

 

  • Reducing waste, fraud, and abuse and increasing oversight over benefit payments.  The legislation increases funding for local food banks, which are in a better position to ensure that nutrition assistance reaches those who truly need it.
  • Ending taxpayer funding for advertising and marketing efforts for SNAP and the automatic enrollment of people who do not need assistance.
  • Restoring the work requirements for able-bodied SNAP recipients without dependents.  Children, those unable to work, and the disabled will not see their benefits affected.  States will maintain the authority to grant waivers to able-bodied individuals who cannot work, due to issues such as mental illness.

 

These commonsense reforms will save taxpayers $39 billion between 2014 and 2023, a 5 percent reduction from the current Congressional Budget Office forecast of federal spending for SNAP, which totals $764 billion over the next decade.

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Contact Information

1432 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-4706
Fax 202-225-2122
barr.house.gov

Andy Barr took the oath of office as the new United States Representative for Kentucky’s Sixth Congressional District on January 3, 2013. As the Sixth District extends from the Bluegrass Region to the edge of the Cumberland Plateau’s coalfields, Congressman Barr enjoys the distinct honor of representing a geographically diverse region, whose residents work in virtually all of Kentucky’s signature industries.

Congressman Barr has dedicated his tenure in Congress to promoting the dreams and aspirations of his constituents by strengthening Kentucky’s signature coal, manufacturing, equine, bourbon, and agriculture industries, while fighting for policies that unleash the creative capacity of every individual. His immediate priorities involve getting Kentuckians back to work, promoting economic growth, and restoring common sense and fiscal sanity to Washington.

Garland “Andy” Barr was born in Lexington, Kentucky on July 24, 1973; the son of Garland Barr; the founder of a successful accounting practice, and Donna Barr, an Episcopal deacon and hospital chaplain. The second-eldest of three children; he grew up enjoying the blessings of a loving family while witnessing his sister Emily’s struggle to overcome the debilitating effects of Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. Emily’s victory, which culminated in her graduation from seminary and her ordination as a minister – inspired Andy Barr to seek causes larger than him in which to invest his talents and energy.

Congressman Barr graduated from Lexington’s Henry Clay High School in 1992, and earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Government and Philosophy from the University of Virginia in 1996, graduating with Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa honors. He served as Legislative Assistant for U.S. Rep. Jim Talent from 1996 until 1998, staffing then-Congressman (and future Senator) Talent’s participation on Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich’s Health Care Reform Task Force. He subsequently returned to Kentucky, earning his law degree from the University of Kentucky in 2001, where he participated on the College of Law’s Moot Court National Team.

In 2004, Congressman Barr joined the administration of newly-elected Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher (who represented the Sixth Congressional District from 1998 until 2003); ultimately rising to the position of Deputy General Counsel to the Governor. Barr returned to his Lexington-based private law practice in 2007.

Congressman Barr is a 2007 graduate of Leadership Lexington, and has served on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Isaac Murphy Memorial Art Garden and Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky. He is a member of Christ Church Cathedral. He is married to the former Eleanor Carol Leavell of Georgetown, Kentucky; together, they are the proud parents of two daughters.


Serving With

James Comer

KENTUCKY's 1st DISTRICT

Brett Guthrie

KENTUCKY's 2nd DISTRICT

Thomas Massie

KENTUCKY's 4th DISTRICT

Hal Rogers

KENTUCKY's 5th DISTRICT

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