Birthdate: Jan. 25, 1957
Birth Place: Brooklyn, NY, United States
Residence: Cockeysville, MD
First Elected: 2010
District: District 1
Andy Harris was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and currently lives in Cockeysville, Md. He received both his bachelor's degree and medical degree from Johns Hopkins University.
Harris is an anesthesiologist.
He has served as a state senator in the Maryland General Assembly for three terms representing Baltimore and Harford counties. He was last elected to his state Senate seat in 2006.
Harris served 17 years in the United States Naval Reserve, including as commanding officer in the Johns Hopkins Naval Reserve Medical Unit from 1989 through 1992.
Harris also has been an associate professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine, and chief of obstetric anesthesiology at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
He and his wife, Cookie, have five children.
Andy Harris went unchallenged in Maryland's Republican primary in April 2012 for his first re-election bid in the House.
Before winning his U.S. House seat in 2010, Harris was known as one of the most conservative members of the Maryland General Assembly in his three terms in the state Senate.
As a result, many political observers initially believed Maryland Democrats would use congressional redistricting to try and draw a new district to help a Democrat oust him in 2012. Instead, the Democrat-controlled General Assembly opted to put more Democratic voters in a western Maryland district held by Republican Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, the only other Republican in Maryland's congressional delegation.
Harris has been an outspoken opponent of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, and he has called for its repeal.
Harris is a frequent critic of excessive federal spending.
"Today, the President released his budget _ one week late, and one trillion dollars short," Harris said in February 2012. "Only in Washington could an actual 5 percent increase in spending be called a 'cut' _ but that's exactly what the President did."
Harris has criticized the Environmental Protection Agency's approach to ground water research. The congressman has focused on the subject as it relates to arguments against a drilling process used to obtain natural gas. He held a subcommittee hearing in February 2012 on the subject.
"This hearing exposes how the EPA is willing to use junk science to promote unnecessary fear about the safety of hydrofracking in an attempt to carry out the president's climate change agenda," Harris said.
Harris was highly critical of Obama's federal stimulus plan, and he continued to criticize the president's efforts to boost the economy in 2011.
"Over Labor Day weekend I met with many small business owners on the Ocean City Boardwalk _ a common theme I heard from those potential job creators was their desire to get government out of the way so that they could do what they do best: grow their businesses and create American jobs," Harris said in September 2011.
Harris contends the nation needs across-the-board tax cuts to enable small businesses and consumers to have more money to spend.
Harris opposes the federal "cap and trade" plan that features economic incentives to reduce carbon emissions from power plants and other sources _ a plan he describes as a job killer.
He says state and federal environmental regulations are hurting business on the Eastern Shore, and he said he's worried the shore's poultry industry could be looking to move away.
Source: Associated Press