Back to the future for Bob Barr?
March 28th, 2013
01:42 PM ET
2 years ago

Back to the future for Bob Barr?

(CNN) – Bob Barr wants to return to Capitol Hill.

The former four-term Republican congressman from Georgia launched a GOP bid Thursday to return to the House of Representatives.

Barr, best known as one of the House GOP ringleaders behind the late 1990's impeachment of President Bill Clinton, is touting his experience as he runs for office again.

"This is not a time to send novices to Washington, the stakes are just too high. We need folks up there that know what's going on, that have a proven record, that have been there, done it, accomplished things and I do that and will do it," Barr said in a conversation with CNN.

Barr adds that he's checked with the GOP leadership in the House and says that if he's elected next year, he'll retain his seniority from his four terms in the chamber, a point that he says is important to his campaign.

Barr was first elected to Congress in the GOP wave of 1994. In 2002, after redistricting controlled by the Democrats, Barr's district was eliminated and he was forced into a primary battle with fellow Republican Rep. John Linder, which he lost. Barr joined the Libertarian party and was their 2008 presidential nominee.

Now he's running for Georgia's 11th Congressional District, which is represented by Republican Rep. Phil Gingrey, who's running for the state's open U.S. Senate seat. Barr could face a crowded field in the battle for the district's GOP nomination.

Barr made his campaign announcement at Adventure Outdoors in Smyrna, Georgia in suburban Atlanta, which he touted as a successful family business. He emphasized his fiscal conservatism in his conversation with CNN. Barr said that spending and taxes were cut when he was in Congress, with a Democrat in the White House, and that it can be done again.

"We need to start getting our economy back on track. We cannot sustain the track we are on with trillion dollar deficits," added Barr. "We need to be cutting taxes, cutting spending, not increasing revenue to government. If there's one thing that we know and this was the same back in the 1990's when I was first elected, is that what causes government to spend money is to give government money to spend."

Barr also touted his ability to reach across the aisle, saying "when it's necessary to work with the other side to actually get things done but without compromising principles, I do have an ability and a track record behind it to do that."

Barr made his announcement one day after the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the Defense of Marriage Act, which Barr sponsored in 1996. When he became a libertarian, Barr called for the repeal of the law, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman.

Barr was known during his years in Congress as one of the most conservative members of the House. Asked if Democrats will attack him again, Barr said "I think they certainly will. I've withstood those attacks before without withering and will do it again."

CNN reached out to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee regarding Barr.

"The key to the Republican Party rebranding is obviously with candidates like Bob Barr as their standard bearer," was the sarcastic response from Jesse Ferguson, the DCCC's deputy executive director.


Filed under: Bob Barr • Georgia
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    No problem, folks. He's a good, old boy.

    March 28, 2013 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    You're an establishment guy Bob? Don't you notice the civil war going on in your party?

    March 28, 2013 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  3. Donna

    Good... he'll keep the seat in Republican hands and away from the whack job Pelosi.

    March 28, 2013 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  4. The Real Tom Paine

    Yes, he introduced DOMA.....when he was on his 3rd marriage.

    March 28, 2013 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  5. maine liberal

    term limits:

    This is not a time to send novices to Washington, the stakes are just too high. We need folks up there that know what's going on, that have a proven record, that have been there, done it, accomplished things and I do that and will do it,"

    March 28, 2013 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  6. Dan W

    He is known for one thing – his relentless attacks on Bill Clinton for infidelity. And he is on his 3rd marriage.

    March 28, 2013 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  7. just sayin

    The Real Tom Paine
    Yes, he introduced DOMA.....when he was on his 3rd marriage.
    ---

    yeah, so what's your point? like many in our country, he keeps trying until he got it right. i thought you lefties weren't into passing judgement on people? you don't seem to have any problem with single women having 10 babies with 10 different guys but you have an issue with him marrying a couple of times?

    March 28, 2013 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  8. kayla

    it's all about power

    March 28, 2013 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  9. Steve Fix

    I can't believe that I'm saying this but while I used to think he was a psychopath, I would vote him now that he's gotten Libertarian religion.

    March 28, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  10. v_mag

    just sayin, apparently, you missed the class on irony and its cousin, hypocrisy. Barr's serial monogamy is only technically different from Clinton's infidelity. So, when Barr was hounding Clinton, it was ironic. Get it now? Barr is a hypocrite. Clear? Just like Gingrich, who was involved in infidelity at the same time.

    BTW, I'm 28 years into my first and only marriage.

    March 28, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  11. Dan Cain

    Barr must think that people have short memories. When he spearheaded the Clinton impeachment, Larry Flint, publisher of Hustler magazine, offered a $1,000,000 (one mission) bounty to anyone who could out a Rerpublican Congresman as having been involved in their own extramarital affair. Interestingly enough, Barr and several others resigned shortly thereafter.

    March 28, 2013 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  12. Rosslaw

    He should also tout his international experience working as a paid consultant for "Baby Doc" Duvalier, the child molesting murderous spawn of "Papa Doc" Duvalier, one of the world's great former mass murderers and dictators. In today's GOP, that would truly be a selling point as a "conservative" experience.

    March 28, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  13. scarf

    The Real Tom Paine
    Yes, he introduced DOMA.....when he was on his 3rd marriage.
    -

    yeah, so what's your point? like many in our country, he keeps trying until he got it right. i thought you lefties weren't into passing judgement on people? you don't seem to have any problem with single women having 10 babies with 10 different guys but you have an issue with him marrying a couple of times?

    Yes, liberals DO have a problem with single women having ten babies with ten different guys. I'm in favor of taxpayers supporting the kids, since THEY didn't do anything wrong. But the mother needs to consent to Depo-Provera to get any support. Our problem with Barr, DOMA, and his third marriage is the hypocrisy. If you connies want to defend marriage, instead of outlawing gay marriage, maybe you should outlaw divorce.....

    March 28, 2013 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  14. chilly g

    the congress need new ideals, not the same old haters, hopeful a democraft will win.

    March 28, 2013 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  15. just sayin

    v_mag
    Barr's serial monogamy is only technically different from Clinton's infidelity
    -–

    only to a brain dead liberal...

    March 28, 2013 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  16. pbernasc

    great, to rejuvenate the GOP,m the best they can do is send in the guy who embarrassed the entire party over a pair of dirty panties ..

    March 28, 2013 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  17. The Real Tom Paine

    -just sayin

    The Real Tom Paine
    Yes, he introduced DOMA.....when he was on his 3rd marriage.
    -

    yeah, so what's your point? like many in our country, he keeps trying until he got it right. i thought you lefties weren't into passing judgement on people? you don't seem to have any problem with single women having 10 babies with 10 different guys but you have an issue with him marrying a couple of times?
    ********************
    Its called irony. Look it up. its interesting that you leap to the assumption that I would give your self-described " single women having 10 babies with 10 different guys "a pass, which would be wrong. I don't. What I don't like is blatant hypocrisy, which Barr, Sanford, Gingrich and others all engaged in when pushing useless legislation and the impeachment of President Clinton. Get off your moral high horse, junior, and try to keep up.

    March 28, 2013 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  18. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Barr, Braun, Gingrey, and the baggers like King, Bachmann, etc., could never hold a real job.

    March 28, 2013 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  19. Mikey

    @just sayin – "you don't seem to have any problem with single women having 10 babies with 10 different guys"
    **********************************************
    Really? Can you name one example? It's probably rarer than actual voter fraud, which is close to nonexistent. It's crazy talk like that that makes right wing views not credible.

    March 28, 2013 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  20. Mikey

    @just sayin – Oh, and by the way, I support responsible family planning and personal responsibility. However, I don't think the solution is to cut benefits and let the kids starve. Do you?

    March 28, 2013 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  21. Tony

    Republicans keep on going back to the well, because they don't know that the water is poisoned.

    March 28, 2013 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Gone from Ga

    This is another reason I am glad I moved out of Georgia. Surely people in Ga are not that stupid to vote for BB

    March 28, 2013 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  23. hansmair

    Would like to know if Barr regrets being a ringleader of that monumental effort to formally accuse the President of wrongdoing – i.e., impeachment – KNOWING that he would be found "not guilty" by the Senate. Would Barr lead another such spectacle over, say, a birth certificate?

    March 28, 2013 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  24. The Real Tom Paine

    @just sayin- just to be clear: Married 16 years, first and last marriage; 2 children ages 14 and 12; just bought my dream house at a fantastic interest rate about 6 months ago: hold sales management position with test and measurement services company, and I also volunteer as a BSA merrit badge counselor( my son is going for his Eagle). The difference between the 2 of us is that I admit I judge, but I willingly assume responsibility for what I say and do. You, however, admit to nothing, thinking that you are as pure as the driven snow. Your daily word salads on here prove this beyond a shadow of a doubt, except to those who think and act as you do. Prove your wild accusations with something, or go away. See ya!

    March 28, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  25. The Real Tom Paine

    -just sayin

    v_mag
    Barr's serial monogamy is only technically different from Clinton's infidelity
    -–

    only to a brain dead liberal...
    **************
    So sayeth the Rightie parrot missing his brain stem. Ever have an original thought from above the waist?

    March 28, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
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