15 Facts About Barry Cowen


Barry Cowen previously served as Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine from June to July 2020.


Barry Cowen's father Bernard Cowen was a TD, Senator and Minister of State.


Barry Cowen's grandfather Christy Cowen was an Offaly County Councillor and a member of the Fianna Fail National Executive.


Barry Cowen is married with four children and is a full-time politician.


Barry Cowen has served in various Fianna Fail Front Bench roles such as Social Protection from 2011 to 2012, Spokesperson for Housing, Planning and Local Government from 2012 to 2018 and Spokesperson for Public Expenditure and Reform from 2018 to 2020.


Barry Cowen represented Fianna Fail in talks on government formation in 2016 and 2020.


In July 2020, it emerged that Cowen had a conviction for drink driving.


The Garda Siochana Ombudsman Commission was asked by the Gardai to investigate the alleged leaking of information concerning Minister for Agriculture Barry Cowen's drink driving arrest.


Barry Cowen accused gardai of criminality for leaking allegations that he attempted to evade a garda checkpoint before he was caught drink driving.


Barry Cowen admitted receiving a ban for drink drinking but denied attempting to evade gardai.


Barry Cowen issued a statement that the garda record was "incorrect" and suggested he would take legal action against the Sunday Times, which first reported the story.


On 14 July 2020, after he refused to resign the role of Minister for Agriculture, Barry Cowen was sacked by Taoiseach, Micheal Martin, due to the controversy surrounding his conviction for drink driving.


In July 2021, Barry Cowen called on Fianna Fail to form a new "modern centre-left" alliance with the Labour Party for the next election.


In March 2023, political news website The Ditch reported that Barry Cowen had failed to declare rental income from 32 acres of farmland, in breach of Standards in Public Office Commission rules.


Barry Cowen subsequently confirmed that he intended to correct his declaration to the Dail Register of Interests.