Tuesday, January 05, 2016

John Barrow Presentation January 12th

Subject: John Barrow Presentation January 12th

Just a reminder that John Barrow, former US Representative from Georgia will speak at the Oconee County Public Library at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, January 12th in the ESP Room.  This program is open to the public.  His topic will be Gerrymandering in Georgia.

Best, Margaret Holt, Chair, Oconee County Democrats

John Barrow

Department of Political Science

Resident Lecturer

John Barrow is the first Scholar in Residence at the Political Science Department. He received his undergraduate degree at the University of Georgia and his law degree at the Harvard Law School. After serving 14 years in local government, Barrow served 10 years in the U. S. House of Representatives. At the end of that time he was the most bi-partisan member of Congress, and the most gerrymandered member of Congress. His interests include the causes of political polarization, and their impacts on politics and policy.
When John Barrow was elected to represent Georgia’s 12th Congressional District in 2004, he was the first Democrat to represent his part of the country in a decade, and the first Democrat to defeat an incumbent Republican in the Deep South in a quarter of a century.  He was immediately gerrymandered out of his district. Ten years later, when he was finally defeated – after 4 wave elections and after being gerrymandered out of his home base not once but twice – John had represented 3 different versions of the same Congressional district, served under 2 Presidents and 3 Speakers, and served in 5 Congresses that were as different from each other as can be.  And he was the last white Democrat in Congress from the Deep South.
John graduated from the University of Georgia in 1976 and, at 20, became one of the youngest members of his class at Harvard Law School.  He came home and practiced law in Athens, Georgia, until his election to Congress in 2004.  During that time, from 1990 to 2004, John served in one of the few consolidated local governments in the country – on the Athens-Clarke County Commission – where he compiled a record as a fiscally conservative progressive who never voted for a tax increase.
While in Congress, John served for 8 years on the powerful House Committee on Energy and Commerce, including the Subcommittee on Health; the Subcommittee on Telecommunications; the Subcommittee on Energy and Power; and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Manufacturing.  Along the way, John also served on the Committee on Agriculture, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, the Committee on Small Business, and the Committee on Veterans Affairs.
As a leader of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition, John earned a reputation for working with Republicans and Democrats.  He pushed for smaller government and spending reforms at the federal level, and he consistently introduced legislation to make responsible cuts in federal spending while fighting for regulatory reform to help businesses grow and succeed.  Among other things, John secured passage of legislation to increase the mileage reimbursement rate for disabled veterans for the first time in over 30 years.
While in Congress, John was recognized for his work and earned the endorsements of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Rifle Association, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, and the National Association of Manufacturers.  And in 2014, the National Journal named John the most bipartisan member of Congress running for reelection that year.

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