U.S. Rep. Andy Barr frequently brags about his bipartisanship when talking to 6th District voters. How bipartisan is our Congressional Representative? Not very bipartisan at all according to current data from the Richard Lugar Center, which tracks bipartisanship in Congress.
“A consistently low index is a very strong indication that a legislator is viewing his or her duties through a partisan lens. A consistently high scores is a strong indication that a legislator is prioritizing problem solving and open to working with the other party when possible.”
Legislators with a score above zero are “bipartisan legislators” based on the prior 20 years of historical data on what constitutes true bipartisanship activity. The higher the score, the greater the bipartisan the legislator. From 2013-2020 Barr has received negative scores that range from -0.15 to -0.39, and during the last full session of Congress scored in the bottom 25% in the entire House in his level of bipartisanship.
Although Barr often likes to talk about his participation in the Bipartisan Working Group as proof of his bipartisan credentials, the reality is he has sponsored very little legislation with members of this group, and virtually no legislation with Democrats to address important social issues like minimum wage laws, tax fairness, health care reform, gun regulations, equal rights, voting rights or environmental protections.
Barr’s approach to bipartisanship is like Charles Manson’s approach to new converts, brag about the sex in the commune, not about the extracurricular consequences of its actions.