Luke Messer

Luke Messer


Reps. Messer, Kennedy Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Help Grad Students Save for Retirement


WASHINGTON (Dec. 7, 2016) — Reps. Luke Messer (R-IN) and Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) introduced bipartisan legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives today that would help graduate students save for retirement.

The Graduate Student Savings Act would allow graduate students or postdoctoral fellows who are paid for their work to save a portion of their stipend in an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Fellowship and stipend funding is currently taxed as income by federal and state governments, but it does not qualify as “compensation” and so it cannot be saved in an IRA.

“I appreciate working with Congressman Kennedy on this common sense bill to help graduate students start saving while they're still in school,” Messer said. “Grad students and researchers who are studying to improve all of our futures should have the chance to invest in their own.”

“Students pursuing advanced degrees should be allowed and encouraged to invest in their future without restrictions or roadblocks,” Kennedy said. “By reclassifying income that is already taxed, this legislation will allow young adults to save as they begin new careers and build families. Along with Congressman Messer, I look forward to passing this bill and supporting current and future graduate students around the country.”

The Graduate Student Savings Act was originally introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Mike Lee (R-UT).  It recently passed the Senate Finance Committee, as part of a larger retirement package.

Messer authored several bills in the 114th Congress aimed at helping Americans save for retirement. He serves on the U.S. House Financial Services Committee and the Education and Workforce Committee. 

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Rep. Messer Votes to Support America’s Troops, Invest in National Security


WASHINGTON (Friday, Dec. 2, 2016) — Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) today voted to pass the National Defense Authorization Act, which boosts support for America’s military and helps defend our country against radical Islamic terrorism.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017 (S. 2943) authorizes a $619 billion national defense budget which includes provisions to:

  • Provide military members with the largest pay raise in six years
  • Strengthen military health care
  • Enhance military training and readiness
  • Stop Obama’s drawdown of troops which has threatened our status on the world stage
  • Prohibit any further transfers of terrorist prisoners from Guantanamo Bay prison to U.S. soil
  • Invest in cybersecurity defense

“Our number one job in Congress is to provide for a national defense and keep Americans safe,” Messer said. “America’s military must be second to none as we face unprecedented threats abroad and work to defeat radical Islamic extremism. This bill invests in our national security and our troops, ensuring America is ready to meet to these challenges head on. Just as importantly, it gives our military members the pay raise they deserve and the quality care they need.”

S. 2943 passed the House of Representatives today and will need approval by the U.S. Senate to move to the president’s desk. 

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Rep. Messer: Congress reaffirms opposition to anti-Israel action by the UN


WASHINGTON (Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016) — Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) issued the following statement today applauding the U.S. House of Representatives’ passage of H. Con. Res 165, which affirms  Congress’ opposition to any action by the UN Security Council that imposes a unilateral, one-sided solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:

“The U.S. must stand up for Israel and be a voice for achieving lasting peace in the region. One-sided, force-fed solutions by the UN will only aggravate tensions. I join my colleagues in urging the Obama administration to block any unilateral action by the UN to recognize a Palestinian state or impose other anti-Israel solutions to this conflict as his term comes to end.”

The U.S. House of Representatives passed H. Con. Res 165 on Tuesday, Nov. 29. 

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House Republicans Pass Rep. Messer’s Proposal to Change House GOP Rules


WASHINGTON (Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016) — Today Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives passed Rep. Luke Messer’s (IN-06) proposal to change House GOP rules, making the conference more responsive to its rank-and-file members.

Messer’s rule will require committee chairs to hold a hearing on a measure within 30 legislative days if it is cosponsored by a majority of the Republican Conference and the cosponsors include one third of the Republican committee members.

“If one thing was clear from the recent election, it’s that the people are still in control of their government,” Messer said. “Congress must be directly responsive to the people it serves. One of the best ways to do that is to remove the barriers that prevent good ideas from succeeding. We can empower the American people by empowering their representatives in Congress to drive results.”

Messer’s rule ensures that popular legislative proposals have a guaranteed path forward in the legislative process to become law. Previously, a committee chair or other powerful member could kill a proposal regardless of how much support it had from conference members – even if it was supported by over half of the conference.

“When Americans contact their representatives about an issue, they wonder if it makes a difference. This new rule will make sure it does,” Messer said. “For the first time, the American people will be able to directly influence whether a policy idea moves forward by picking up the phone and urging their representatives’ support.”

Messer also authored a rule amendment which was adopted by the House Republicans today to improve conference culture by preventing personal attacks during debate, which impedes constructive policy discussion.

Messer’s rule changes will now be part of the policies that govern the House Republican Conference for the 115th Congress.

Messer has been advocating for changes to House Republican Conference rules for more than a year. This September, he sent a letter with Reps. Rodney Davis (IL-13) and Morgan Griffith (VA-9) to all House Republicans urging several rules changes to empower members and help them deliver for the American people.

Messer is a member of House Republican Leadership, recently reelected to serve as Chair of the Republican Policy Committee in the 115th Congress. 

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Rep. Messer reelected to Chair Republican Policy Committee


WASHINGTON (Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016) — Today,  Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives reelected Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) as Chair of the Republican Policy Committee for the 115th Congress

The Republican Policy Committee (RPC) is tasked with developing and promoting policy solutions for the House Republican Conference. As Chair of the RPC, Messer is a member of House Republican Leadership. He previously served as RPC Chair during the 114th Congress.

“Our nation spoke loud and clear on Election Day, and Congress now has an unprecedented opportunity to deliver on conservative principles,” Messer said. “The Republican Policy Committee will work with President-elect Donald Trump to drive policy results and get Washington back on the side of the American people.”

Messer said his priority as RPC Chair will be using the committee as an engine for innovative, thoughtful policy solutions that improve the lives of everyday Americans.

As Policy Committee Chair during the 114th Congress, Messer promoted conservative policy by creating working groups on key issue areas, including Millennials, Law Enforcement and Women in the 21st Century Workforce.  Next term, Messer intends to create a working group on 2nd Amendment issues. 

He als facilitated member forums to discuss pressing policy issues and influence upcoming legislation, as well as held expert panels on issues like trade, health care, education and national security challenges.

During House Leadership elections today, Messer ran unopposed for Republican Policy Committee Chair. Reps. Susan Brooks (IN-05), Elise Stefanik (NY-21) and Morgan Griffith (VA-9) all nominated Messer for RPC Chair.

"A famous Hoosier, Kurt Vonnegut, said, 'I don't know what it is about Hoosiers, but wherever you go there is always a Hoosier doing something very important there.' This is certainly true of Rep. Luke Messer, and I'm proud that he will continue his work as a conservative champion and thoughtful policymaker as Republican Policy Chairman in the 115th Congress," Rep. Susan Brooks said

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Honoring our Veterans


Today is Veterans Day. There is no better day to pay tribute to the heroic men and women who have served and defended our country since its founding.

Chances are many of you know someone who served or is currently serving in the U.S. military. Nearly 19 million veterans live in the United States today. Right now, there are also more than 1.4 million people serving in the Armed Forces, all across this country and here at home.

Our military members and veterans are among the bravest, most honorable people in the world. They may be your grandfathers, brothers, mothers, teachers or neighbors; and they are the reason we live in this great country today.

They devoted their time, their careers and their lives to preserve our freedom, values and way of life. It is impossible to put a price tag on the liberty and security we enjoy today because of the sacrifices of our veterans and their loved ones.

Today and every day, it is up to all of us to ensure that those who served this country so proudly know their sacrifice is appreciated. They should never feel lost, uncared for or abandoned. Our veterans shaped our nation’s history and made it the greatest country on earth to call home. They deserve our deepest admiration and our steadfast support.

I hope each of you takes time today to thank a veteran or military member in your life. Talk to those in your family or your neighborhood who have served. Listen to their stories and remember the difference they made. If you see someone in uniform out in your community, say thank you. These small gestures can mean the most.

And, once this day has passed, I hope you will continue to remember our veterans. They deserve our respect and admiration every day of the year. 

For generations, the American soldier has been willing to stand up and fight for our country. Every one of our veterans is a living reminder that America truly is the land of the free and home of the brave.

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Ed Department responds to Rep. Messer, agrees to restore Pell Grant eligibility to former ITT Tech students


WASHINGTON (Oct. 28, 2016) — In response to urging by Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06), the U.S. Department of Education today announced it will  restore Pell Grant eligibility to students who were using the grants to attend ITT Technical Institute when it abruptly closed last month.

Federal Pell Grants are provided to low-income students pursuing postsecondary education, and lifetime eligibility for the need-based grants is limited.

Messer sent a letter to the Education Department earlier this month, after he realized the Department was refusing to restore Pell Grant eligibility to ITT Tech students, leaving them with few options to finish their degrees.

The Education Department responded to Messer’s letter today, saying it would reverse its previous decision and reset Pell Grant eligibility to these students, per Messer’s suggestion that Section 437(c)(3) of the Higher Education Act required this action.

“ITT Tech closed largely at the hand of federal bureaucrats, yet they had no back up plan for the students who would be impacted the most,” Messer said. “For many low-income students, Pell Grants are their best shot to attend college and secure a better future for themselves. I’m relieved that the Education Department is doing right by these students and ensuring they have a path forward to continue their education.”

It’s estimated that the Education Department’s decision today could help more than 16,000 students.

Messer has also authored a bill that would allow veterans to recover their GI Bill educational benefits if they were using their benefits at a college or university that closes, preventing them from completing their degree.

The bill (H.R. 6003) would apply to the nearly 7,000 veterans who were enrolled at ITT Tech at the time it closed. 

Based in Indiana, ITT Tech operated 130 campuses nationwide and served about 40,000 students when it announced on Sept. 6, 2016 that it would close. The announcement followed an Aug. 25 decision by the Education Department to prohibit the institution from enrolling new students using federal student aid.

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OP ED: Securing our Schools Can’t Wait


Attacks on our schools, from Columbine to Sandy Hook, have shocked communities, devastated families and exposed serious security gaps. Rather than stand idly by, it is our collective responsibility to secure our schools and prevent these kinds of horrific events that affect the hearts and minds of our young people and sear our national conscience.

The reality is our schools may be more at risk today than ever before. With the rise of global terrorist networks and a lack of meaningful public policy to address mental illness, schools are increasingly susceptible targets for disturbed individuals seeking to attack vulnerable populations.

Thankfully, our own state and local leaders are pioneering the school security landscape. In 2016, Indiana approved a new law to establish minimum standards and best practices for school emergency response systems. This is a great first step, but many challenges still remain.

A majority of our school buildings are outdated and unprepared for the types of violence we have seen darken the doors of our classrooms. On average, the main instructional buildings of America’s approximately 100,000 K-12 schools are more than 40 years old. Many of these older buildings lack even minimal security features.

Emergency preparedness by schools is often treated on a reactive case-by-case basis as threats arise or after tragedies occur.  There is no wider strategy to provide schools with guidance and proven tools to keep students safe.

As your voices in Congress, we’re serving on the bipartisan Congressional School Safety Caucus to drive a national conversation about how to proactively address these challenges and best equip schools to respond to modern-day threats. The goal of this discussion is to bring together education, law enforcement, government and private-sector leaders to share best practices, increase awareness of available solutions and work to develop funding strategies so schools can prioritize student safety.

Already, this group of leaders has produced bipartisan legislation that seeks to help schools across the country modernize and implement improved security measures, such as training for staff and students. We’ve also introduced legislation calling on the Departments of Homeland Security and Education to create a national strategy to help schools protect themselves against acts of terrorism and other emergencies.

Of course, we know that many of the best solutions are going to come from the folks on-the-ground; the parents, teachers, administrators, security professionals, law enforcement and emergency personnel who work hard every day to safeguard our students.

Addressing school security challenges is not an easy task, but it could not be more important. Protecting our children is a responsibility that requires all of us at the table, working together.

We just marked Safe Schools Week and in that spirit, we encourage all community members – whether a parent, teacher, police officer, city council member or just a concerned American – to join the conversation and push for results. We cannot wait for another attack to remind us what’s at stake.

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Rep. Messer urges Dept. of Education to restore Pell Grant eligibility to ITT Tech students


WASHINGTON (Oct. 12, 2016) — Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) is urging the U.S. Department of Education to restore Pell Grant eligibility to approximately 16,000 students nationwide who were using the grants to attend ITT Technical Institute when it abruptly closed last month.

Federal Pell Grants are provided to low-income students pursuing postsecondary education, and lifetime eligibility for the need-based grants is limited.

The Department of Education is currently telling former ITT Tech students it will not restore or “reset” their Pell Grant eligibility, leaving many of these students with few options to finish their degrees.

“For many low-income students, Pell Grants are their best shot to attend college and secure a better future for themselves,” Messer said. “ITT Tech closed largely at the hand of federal bureaucrats at the Education Department, and for them to now leave these students high-and-dry is a disgrace.”

In a letter sent to the Education Department, Messer urged the Department to immediately reverse its decision so that these students are not harmed and questioned why the Department is not using its statutory authority to take such action. 

According to U.S. House of Representatives legal counsel, Section 437(c)(3) of the Higher Education Act requires the Education Department to restore Pell Grant benefits for students who are unable to complete their course of study due to the closure of an institution. 

“It’s frustrating that the Department did not do its homework to ensure students were protected and had options before taking action against ITT Tech,” Messer said. “Students should not be blamed for this closure, and we must do everything we can to ensure they have the opportunity to continue their education.”

Based in Indiana, ITT Tech operated 130 campuses nationwide and served about 40,000 students when it announced on Sept. 6, 2016 that it would close. The announcement followed an Aug. 25 decision by the Education Department to prohibit the institution from enrolling new students using federal student aid.

Messer has also authored a bill that would allow veterans to recover their GI Bill educational benefits if they were using their benefits at a college or university that closes, preventing them from completing their degree.

The bill (H.R. 6003) would apply to the nearly 7,000 veterans who were enrolled at ITT Tech at the time it closed. 

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Rep. Messer: Port in Lawrenceburg would transform local economy


WASHINGTON (Friday, Oct. 7, 2016) — Rep. Luke Messer (IN-06) issued the following statement today following news that Lawrenceburg, Ind. could be the site of Indiana’s fourth port:

“This is great news. Building a port in this region would transform our local economy, connecting more Hoosier industry with the world marketplace. This would be a boon to existing agriculture and manufacturing companies, and it would also draw more 21st-century job creators to our communities. World-class transit and logistics options are as key to job growth as low taxes and less burdensome regulation. I thank local and state leaders for helping make southeast Indiana a great place to invest and grow.”

The Ports of Indiana announced yesterday that it has identified a possible site in Lawrenceburg, Ind. for use as the state’s fourth port. More information can be found here.

Messer represents Lawrenceburg as part of the 6th Congressional District.

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Rep Messer Honors Indiana's Bicentennial

2016-12-09 19:33:25

Rep Messer: Hyde Amendment Saves Lives

2016-09-30 20:30:17

Congressman Luke Messer: "Not one American life is worth the risk."

2016-09-15 21:33:41

Rep. Messer fights for education choice on House floor

2016-04-29 14:17:48

Rep. Messer on "personality" vs. "policies & principles" in Indiana Primary

2016-04-28 21:29:33

Rep. Messer fights to protect retirement advice for low-,middle-income families

2016-04-28 20:09:33

Rep. Messer questions DOE Secretary about Title I funds for Indiana charter schools

2016-02-24 18:39:04

Messer defends debt ceiling transparency amendment on House Floor

2016-02-11 22:33:25

Messer debates bill to end Operation Choke Point

2016-02-04 15:57:11

Rep. Messer advocates for school choice during House Ed & Workforce hearing

2016-02-03 20:42:34

Messer rallies at SCOTUS to defend workplace freedom #istandwithrebecca

2016-01-11 16:41:37

Rep. Messer defends 2nd Amendment Rights on CNN

2016-01-08 14:38:17

Rep. Luke Messer: "Travel documents can be weapons of terror"

2015-12-07 22:28:33

Congressman Messer supports the Every Student Succeeds Act

2015-12-02 22:07:15

Messer on FOX News: "Refugees should be vetted by FBI and Homeland Security"

2015-11-21 19:16:17

Congressman Messer on Varney & Co. discussing #SyrianRefugees

2015-11-18 15:38:32

Congressman Messer condemns Paris terror attacks

2015-11-17 21:16:56

Rep. Messer works to ensure Americans have access to affordable financial planning advice

2015-10-27 21:49:24

Rep. Messer continues to fight for all children to have access to a high-quality education

2015-10-21 21:04:00

Rep. Messer tells Chuck Todd #HouseSpeaker race is less about “who” and more about “how”

2015-10-08 22:07:25

Contact Information

508 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-3021
Fax 202-225-3382

Luke Messer is the Congressman for Indiana’s 6th Congressional District, a 19 county region of east-central and southeastern Indiana comprised of manufacturing and agricultural communities. Elected President of the Freshman Class by his peers, Messer serves on the House Committees on Budget, Foreign Affairs, and Education & the Workforce.

Congressman Messer is a 6th-generation Hoosier and national advocate for limited government, fiscal discipline, a strong national defense, and traditional values. Messer opposes bailouts, government takeovers and runaway federal spending.

Prior to his service in Congress, Luke Messer gained experience as a lawyer and former two-term State Representative working with Governor Daniels on budget issues as a Member of the Indiana House Ways & Means Committee. Messer is an accomplished education reformer: authoring nationally recognized high school drop-out reform legislation in the Indiana Statehouse and serving in the private sector as the President and CEO of the Hoosiers for Economic Growth Network & School Choice Indiana.

Raised by a single-mom who still works at a factory in Greensburg Indiana, Luke Messer was taught the value of hard work at an early age.  He worked his way through school with jobs that included collecting garbage, mowing lawns, waiting tables, telemarketing and umpiring baseball games.  Eventually, Messer graduated summa cum laude & Phi Beta Kappa from Wabash College.  Luke earned his law degree at Vanderbilt University where he also served on the Law Review.

Luke and his wife Jennifer have two daughters, one son and three dogs.  Luke has also served as an elder at his church and is the author of a children’s book about Indiana entitled “Hoosier Heart.”

Serving With

Jackie Walorski


Marlin Stutzman


Todd Rokita


Susan Brooks


Larry Bucshon


Todd Young


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