Bob Barr on Government Reform

Libertarian nominee for President; Former Republican Representative (GA-7)

Put Constitution front & center

Bob Barr, four-term Republican congressman from Georgia, is the candidate of the Libertarian Party, the oldest and largest of the third-party organizations. The three debaters agreed that the US is veering off-course from the Constitution.

“We hear about Joe the Plumber or hear about how much money Senator Obama is going to spend or how much money Senator McCain is going to spend,” Barr said, “but we don’t hear about the Constitution. That’s what we need to put back front and center.”

Source: 2008 third-party presidential debate, reported on WKYC News Oct 30, 2008

Clinton & Reno covered up 1996 illegal campaign finance

Attorney General Janet Reno faced two problems inside the Justice Department in her scheme to cover up the illegal campaign finance activity that surrounded Bill Clinton’s 1996 reelection campaign. FBI director Louis Freeh and Charles LaBella, the chairman of the campaign finance investigation task force, both independently concluded that substantial criminal conduct had taken place in connection with the 1996 Clinton campaign.

Furthermore, Reno herself hardly kept her distance from the fund-raising scheme. In just one example, she received a personal memo updating her on the Democratic National Committee’s plans to raise $100 million prior to the 1996 elections. The memo included a hand-scrawled note to “Janet” from a top party fund-raiser. Needless to say, this put Reno in an awkward position.

Reno kept documents [from this investigation] hidden from public view. If the Freeh and LaBella memos had become public in 1997, they would have galvanized our [impeachment] efforts.

Source: The Meaning of IS, by Bob Barr, Chapter One Jul 2, 2004

Voted YES on banning soft money donations to national political parties.

Support a ban on soft money donations to national political parties but allow up to $10,000 in soft-money donations to state and local parties for voter registration and get-out-the vote activity.
Bill HR 2356 ; vote number 2001-228 on Jul 12, 2001

Voted NO on banning soft money and issue ads.

Campaign Finance Reform Act to ban "soft money" and impose restrictions on issue advocacy campaigning.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Shays, R-CT; Bill HR 417 ; vote number 1999-422 on Sep 14, 1999

Restrict campaign donations from foreigners or 3rd parties.

Barr co-sponsored restricting campaign donations from foreigners or 3rd party

To amend the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to increase the penalties imposed for making or accepting contributions in the name of another and to prohibit foreign nationals from making any campaign-related disbursements.

Source: Conduit Contribution Prevention Act (H.R.1747) 1999-H1747 on May 11, 1999

Limit punitive damages; term limits on Congress.

Barr signed the Contract with America:

[As part of the Contract with America, within 100 days we pledge to bring to the House Floor the following bills]:

The Common Sense Legal Reforms Act:
“Loser pays” laws, reasonable limits on punitive damages, and reform of product liability laws to stem the endless tide of litigation.
The Citizen Legislature Act:A first-ever vote on term limits to replace career politicians with citizen legislators.
Source: Contract with America 93-CWA11 on Sep 27, 1994

Government is too big, too intrusive, too easy with money.

Barr signed the Contract with America:

This year’s election offers the chance, after four decades of one-party control, to bring to the House a new majority that will transform the way Congress works. That historic change would be the end of government that is too big, too intrusive, and too easy with the public’s money. It can be the beginning of a Congress that respects the values and shares the faith of the American family.

Like Lincoln, our first Republican president, we intend to act “with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right.” To restore accountability to Congress. To end its cycle of scandal and disgrace. To make us all proud again of the way free people govern themselves.

    On the first day of the 104th Congress, the new Republican majority will immediately pass the following major reforms, aimed at restoring the faith and trust of the American people in their government:
  1. Require all laws that apply to the rest of the country also apply equally to the Congress;
  2. Select a major independent auditing firm to conduct a comprehensive audit of Congress for waste, fraud, and abuse;
  3. Cut the number of House committees, and cut committee staff by one-third;
  4. Limit the terms of all committee chairs;
  5. Ban the casting of proxy votes in committee;
  6. Require committee meetings to be open to the public;
  7. Require a three-fifths majority vote to pass a tax increase
  8. Guarantee an honest accounting of our federal budget by implementing zero baseline budgeting.
Source: Contract with America 93-CWA2 on Sep 27, 1994

Other candidates on Government Reform: Bob Barr on other issues:
GOP: Sen.John McCain
GOP V.P.: Gov.Sarah Palin
Democrat: Sen.Barack Obama
Dem.V.P.: Sen.Joe Biden

Third Parties:
Constitution: Chuck Baldwin
Libertarian: Rep.Bob Barr
Constitution: Amb.Alan Keyes
Liberation: Gloria La Riva
Green: Rep.Cynthia McKinney
Socialist: Brian Moore
Independent: Ralph Nader
Civil Rights
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Page last updated: Feb 08, 2010