Barr, Tonko Lead Congressional Horse Caucus

Representatives take over role of educating Congress on importance of horse industry.

Congressmen Andy Barr (R-Ky.) and Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) have been named co-chairs of the Congressional Horse Caucus in the 113th Congress.

They replace Congressmen Dennis Cardoza (D-Cal.) and Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.) in the bipartisan group in the House of Representatives.

"Congressman Cardoza and Guthrie were great co-chairs of the Caucus and we are grateful for all their work on behalf of the horse community," Jay Hickey, president of the American Horse Council, said in a release. "We are happy to have Congressmen Barr and Tonka as the new co-chairs. They both represent districts that are important to the horse industry and we are lucky to have their leadership in the 113th Congress."

The Congressional Horse Caucus works to educate Congress and their staffs about the importance of the horse industry in the economic, agricultural, sporting, gaming, and recreational life of the nation.

"I am honored to represent the 'Horse Capital of the World' and excited that I have been named co-chairman of the Congressional Horse Caucus," said Barr, who represents Lexington in Kentucky's Second Congressional District. "Kentucky's signature horse industry provides Kentuckians with nearly 100,000 direct and indirect jobs and has a $4 billion economic impact on our state annually."

Barr would like to increase caucus membership.

"As co-chairman, I have already been hard at work recruiting new members to the caucus and planning meetings to educate Congress on issues impacting the horse industry," Barr said in a release. "I am glad that Congressman Paul Tonko from New York will be my co-chair and appreciate his bipartisan leadership as we plan these events."

Tonko said the horse industry is important to New York and the nation.

"The equine industry represents a large number of quality jobs, economic growth, and a way of life not only in my Upstate New York district, but across the nation in rural and urban areas alike," said Tonko, who represents New York's 20th Congressional District, which includes Saratoga Springs. "I look forward to serving as co-chair of the Congressional Horse Caucus and working with my colleagues in the House in a bipartisan manner to promote this sector of our country's culture, tradition, and economy."