Morgan Griffith

Limiting Sexual Harassment Payouts ‘Complicated,’ Lawmakers Say
Funding limitation could be one response to sexual misconduct scandals roiling Capitol Hill

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., said using the appropriations process to restrict settlement payouts was complex. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated, 4:05 p.m. | Lawmakers have been quick to express their disgust with sexual harassment payments that come out of federal coffers to cover the cost of elected officials’ behavior. But members are more guarded when asked whether they would take action by attaching a funding limitation to a spending bill — a common instrument used by lawmakers in appropriations.

Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma, a top Republican appropriator, sounded cautious after last week’s revelation that the Office of Compliance has doled out tens of thousands of dollars since 2013.

Roe Gets the Band Back Together in D.C.
Tennessee Republican plays guitar for a fundraising event and reunion of his bluegrass band

Rep. Phil Roe’s band that he formed in medical school more than 40 years ago got back together Monday.

The Tennessee Republican and three of his friends — Jim Arthur, Steve Barnes and Tom Eades — formed the bluegrass band The Pony Express when Roe was in medical school at the University of Tennessee in the 1970s.

House Defeats Amendment to Cut One-Third of CBO Staff
‘It was CBO’s reluctance to change their erroneous forecasts’

Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Va., offered the amendment that would have gotten rid of an 89-person CBO budget analysis division. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The House on Wednesday night rejected, 116-309, an amendment that would have eliminated one-third of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The amendment, offered by Virginia Republican Morgan Griffith to the four-bill appropriations minibus the House is currently debating, would have abolished CBO’s 89-employee budget analysis division and saved a total of $15 million in salaries. Roughly half of Republicans joined Democrats in voting down the amendment.

House to Vote on CBO Staff Cuts
Appropriations amendment would eliminate budget analysis division

Virginia Rep. Morgan Griffith, who led the effort to reintroduce the Holman rule, took the first crack at using it by offering an amendment to cut Congressional Budget Office staff. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House this week will vote on whether to eliminate the positions of 89 Congressional Budget Office employees in what will be its first vote under the so-called Holman rule that Republicans in the chamber reinstated on a trial basis earlier this year.

The Holman rule allows members to offer amendments to appropriations bills designed to reduce the scope and size of government.

Griffith Emerging As House Republican Bridge Builder
Colleagues say Virginia Republican is helping overcome divides within the GOP conference

Virginia Rep. Morgan Griffith has drawn praise from his colleagues for his willingness to work toward solutions and compromise. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In a political world where perfectionism can often earn you a bad reputation as an obstructionist, Rep. Morgan Griffith has managed to do the opposite.

Colleagues say the Virginia Republican, a member of the hard-line conservative House Freedom Caucus, has shown a willingness to compromise and work toward solutions on legislative and procedural problems. But they also describe the four-term lawmaker as a principled perfectionist whose attention to detail has been an asset, not a hindrance.

For Freedom Caucus, No Place Like Home
Constituents appreciate group’s influence in Congress

North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows, chairman of the Freedom Caucus, answers questions from protestors in Morganton, North Carolina, about the health care bill and Russia investigations. (Lindsey McPherson/CQ Roll Call)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Washington may not always understand or appreciate the House Freedom Caucus, but its constituents generally do.

At events in the districts of three caucus members last week — Mark Meadows in North Carolina, and Dave Brat and Morgan Griffith in Virginia — a variety of constituents interviewed had not only heard of the hard-line conservative group but showed a good grasp of its mission: to provide a voice for people outside the Beltway who lack backing among Washington’s special interests. 

Morgan Griffith Talks Trump With Middle Schoolers
Virginia Republican drops by Glade Spring school to talk shop

Rep. Morgan Griffith told middle school students in Glade Spring, Va., that President Donald Trump is "an interesting character." (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GLADE SPRING, Va.-- President Donald Trump is not just a point of intrigue in Washington. Middle school students visited by Rep. Morgan Griffith here Wednesday seemed rather curious about the new president.

The Virginia Republican dropped by Glade Spring Middle School to present the students and teachers with a flag that had flown over the Capitol, and then also took questions from a few dozen sixth and seventh graders gathered in the gymnasium.

How the House Finally Got to ‘Yes’ on Health Care
Frenzied final negotiations helped win over enough holdouts

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, center, and Chief Deputy Whip Patrick McHenry lead a group of Republican members to the House floor Thursday to vote on the GOP health care bill after meeting with White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The final push on the health care bill started in earnest Monday night.

At 6 p.m., a cadre of Republican lawmakers from the Energy and Commerce Committee met in an unmarked Capitol office to make changes they hoped would bring moderate holdouts on board with the party’s overhaul of the health care system.

Word on the Hill: Ready to Run
Make reservations to dine out for a good cause next week

The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run is an annual race that passes monuments, such as the World War II Memorial, and runs along the Tidal Basin. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Capitol Hill Competition is fast approaching.

Part of the larger Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run on April 2, it awards the fastest House or Senate congressional office with the Capitol Cup to display for a year.

Word on the Hill: Cortez Masto and Latina Staffers
Tea party rally and award for Biden

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, center, front row, and the staffers. (Courtesy Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto's office)

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev., met with Latina Senate staffers on Monday for a roundtable discussion on the importance of women and students of color getting access to internships and employment opportunities on Capitol Hill.

They also discussed obstacles women face in a Senate office and brainstormed other ways to address issues pertaining to a lack of diversity.