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John Allan Yarmuth
Birthdate: Nov. 4, 1947
Birth Place: Louisville, KY, United States
Residence: Louisville, KY
First Elected: 2006
District: District 3
Undergraduate: Yale University
John Yarmuth was born in Louisville, Ky., where he still resides. He earned a bachelor's in American studies from Yale University.
Yarmuth was an aide to Republican U.S. Sen. Marlow Cook. He founded Louisville Today magazine in 1976, starting a six-year stint at the magazine.
He joined the Democratic Party in 1985, saying the Republican Party no longer welcomed diverse views.
He worked at the University of Louisville and at a home health care company. He then founded in 1990 the weekly alternative publication LEO, where he was a regular columnist. LEO was sold in 2003, but Yarmuth continued writing columns for the paper.
He was elected to the U.S. House in 2006.
Yarmuth and his wife, Catherine, have a son.
John Yarmuth has steadfastly supported Democratic initiatives during his tenure in Congress, while solidifying his strength in Kentucky's most liberal-leaning district, which encompasses nearly all of Louisville.
Yarmuth voted with his party in 2009 and 2010 in support of the approximately $800 billion economic stimulus package, the federal health care reform bill and the overhaul of financial industry regulations _ all initiatives backed by President Barack Obama.
But Yarmuth has been critical of Obama's economic team, saying they were showing more concern for Wall Street than for average Americans. Yarmuth said he has detected "a sense of floundering and indecisiveness" by Obama's administration in trying to revitalize the economy.
But he has saved his harshest criticism for Republican policies. Yarmuth warned in 2012 that deep spending cuts pushed by congressional House Republicans would imperil the nation's sluggish economic recovery and cost jobs at a time of stubbornly high unemployment. He said the poor would shoulder the brunt of the cuts pushed by House Republicans.
In April 2012, Yarmuth accused Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney of embracing a Darwinian approach to government that he said would hurt middle- and lower-income Americans. He said Romney's approach is to give tax breaks to the wealthy and get government out of the way on the assumption that will help everyone.
Yarmuth breezed to renomination in the May 2012 primary, winning 87 percent of the vote. He faces Republican businessman Brooks Wicker in the November general election.
Yarmuth initially voted against the 2008 federal bailout of the financial industry, but changed his mind and reluctantly supported the version passed in the Senate. He said he feared a deeper economic crisis and job losses in his district if the measure failed to pass.
Yarmuth joined the powerful Ways and Means Committee at the beginning of his second term. He said he would find ways to revitalize the nation's economy, provide affordable health care for all Americans and bolster retirement security.
He later switched to the House Budget Committee, saying the budget will be key to revitalizing the nation's economy. He is also a member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which oversees federal agencies and is the House's main investigative committee.
Early in his tenure, Yarmuth turned an eye toward bringing federal money home to his district. He worked to sustain funding for a pilot program operated by Louisville-based Volunteers of America to keep veterans from becoming homeless. He also championed a $45 million earmark for another phase of the renovation of the McAlpine Locks and Dam complex, which serves commercial barge traffic along the Ohio River.
He was out front in efforts to build a new VA hospital in Louisville and to build two new bridges over the Ohio River between Louisville and southern Indiana.
Source: Associated Press
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