LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky state Sen. Reggie Thomas says he is running for the U.S. House.

Thomas, a Democrat, made the announcement Saturday at the historic Lyric Theatre in Lexington. A lawyer and professor at Kentucky State University, Thomas was elected to the Kentucky state Senate in 2013.

He is challenging Republican U.S. Rep. Andy Barr for the 6th District congressional seat.

In a statement released by his campaign, Thomas said "Congress is selling out to special interests." Thomas said he "will put the people of Kentucky first" if elected.

Rick VanMeter, a spokesman for the Barr campaign, said in a statement that Barr is "focused on fighting for the values and interests of the people" in his district.