WASHINGTON, D.C. – Energy and Commerce Republican Leader Greg Walden (R-OR) and Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) released the following statement after Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy laid out four strategies for reopening the House of Representatives along with top Republicans from the Committees on Rules and House Administration.
“We are pleased to see Leader McCarthy lay out a framework to get the People’s House back to doing the People’s Business in a safe way. During these unprecedented times, we must be mindful of any precedent we set. We agree key committees of jurisdiction must explore new ways to meet and conduct business, and that’s why Energy and Commerce Republicans have begun to explore this very topic. We thank Leader McCarthy, Rules Committee Republican Leader Tom Cole, and House Administration Committee Republican Leader Rodney Davis for their critical leadership on this issue, and will work alongside them to ensure any changes to regular order closely hew to the Rules and Precedents of the institution, respect the history and precedents of our committees, and include clear guidelines to protect the rights of all committee members,” said Walden and Griffith.
Last month, Walden asked Griffith to lead an informal group of Energy and Commerce Republicans in discussions around the next steps in conducting Energy and Commerce Committee business. Members participating in these discussions include: Health Subcommittee Republican Leader Dr. Michael Burgess (R-TX), Communications and Technology Subcommittee Republican Leader Bob Latta (R-OH), Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH), Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN), Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), and Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA).
The members have held a series of calls on topics including: protecting the rights of the minority and individual members in any changes to regular committee business, best practices to protect members and staff as the committee resumes business, and ways to conduct critical oversight through alternate hearing models and also in lieu of formal hearings. Over the last several weeks, the Energy and Commerce Committee has held a series of bipartisan calls with key administration officials about their ongoing efforts to respond to COVID-19.
You can read Leader McCarthy’s post on Medium here.