Bob Goodlatte

Bob Goodlatte




WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bob Goodlatte released the following statement on the shooting in Franklin County today:


“The horrific murders that occurred this morning have impacted the entire Roanoke community. Maryellen and I offer our condolences to the families of Alison Parker and Adam Ward during this very difficult time. I had the great opportunity to work with Alison and Adam, and they will be dearly missed by those in our community as well as their loved ones and colleagues at WDBJ. I continue to keep the WDBJ family as well as Vicki Gardner, who was wounded this morning, in my thoughts and prayers. As we continue to learn more about this terrible tragedy, I am thankful for the coordinated efforts of multiple federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in responding quickly.”

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Richmond Times Dispatch: Editorial: Good for Goodlatte for defending free speech on college campuses


By Editorial Board

August 19, 2015 | Hyperlink

In recent years, colleges and universities have come under tremendous pressure from a wide array of sources, from the federal Education Department to student activists on campus, that has led them to ride roughshod over the constitutional right to free speech.

Far too many public institutions have adopted campus speech codes that restrict not only where and when members of the community can speak freely to small “free-speech zones,” but also sharply curtail what they can say. Campus speech codes have prohibited everything from “humor and jokes about sex” to any expression that might “offend” anybody else at the university.

In recent years, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education has become something like the ACLU for higher education by defending students and faculty members, of every political persuasion, who have run afoul of such speech codes. By publicizing egregious cases and advocating for those censured, it has helped to roll back some of the more outrageous speech codes around the country.

Not long ago, FIRE President Greg Lukianoff testified before the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice about how much work remains to be done. “Highly restrictive speech codes are the rule rather than the exception on public college campuses nationwide,” Lukianoff noted. In some places, Lukianoff testified, speech codes “persist even in the very jurisdictions where they have been ruled unconstitutional.” (Only one public college in Virginia, Norfolk State, gets a red-light rating from FIRE, although several others get a yellow-light rating.)

Now the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Virginia’s 6th District Rep. Bob Goodlatte, has written to the presidents of 161 public institutions that have among the worst speech codes in the nation. The letter reminds the presidents of what they seem to have forgotten: Their institutions are part of the government and, as such, are obliged to adhere scrupulously to the First Amendment. That means they cannot censor speech just because it might hurt somebody’s feelings. It concludes by asking the university presidents “what steps your institution plans to take to promote free and open expression on its campus(es), including any steps toward bringing your speech policies in accordance with the First Amendment.”

Goodlatte’s letter serves as an important counterweight to the “Dear Colleague” letters and other regulatory decrees of the Education Department. It ought to put both the universities and the federal education bureaucracy on notice that they remain subject to the First Amendment, and any rules they consider should first be tested against it before moving toward adoption.

University administrators want to maintain a serene atmosphere on campus. And they certainly want to avoid the loss of federal funding that they might incur if they too blatantly flout the Education Department. But those desires do not trump the nation’s founding document and its most fundamental principles. Goodlatte deserves a round of applause for reminding them of that.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.— House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Constitution and Civil Justice Subcommittee Chairman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) today sent a letter to 58 Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country requesting information on their clinical procedures and standards when performing abortion services.

The letter to the affiliates addresses disturbing issues brought to light through a series of videos from the Center for Medical Progress that suggest “Planned Parenthood abortion practitioners are altering procedures in order to harvest the organs and body parts of aborted children.”

In the letter, Planned Parenthood affiliates are asked to address basic questions from the size and scope of their work in abortion practices to “how many abortions by trimester were done for each of the past 10 years.” Additional questions strike at the heart of abortion practices discussed in the Center for Medical Progress’ videos such as “[H]as anyone at your clinics ever modified or changed their abortion technique in order to increase the odds of preserving intact fetal tissue and organs?”

The letter is part of the Judiciary Committee’s ongoing investigation into the acts of Planned Parenthood and comes in addition to letters sent to the Department of Justice.

Below is the text of the letter. A copy of the signed letter can be found here.

To Whom It May Concern:

Recent videos released by the Center for Medical Progress suggest that Planned Parenthood abortion practitioners are altering procedures in order to harvest the organs and body parts of aborted children. These videos suggest this disturbing practice is more than an isolated instance. Therefore, I write to ask the following questions regarding the clinics with which you are affiliated: 

1. How many clinics are operated by your affiliate? Which of these clinics perform abortions? For each clinic that performs abortions, please indicate how many abortions by trimester were done for each of the past 10 years.

2. What steps, if any, do your clinics take to ensure compliance with the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act?

3. Which of your clinics use feticides such as Digoxin? In what percent of cases are feticides used?  At what gestational age are feticides used?

4. Do your doctors sign an intent statement regarding abortion procedures? If so, please provide your affiliate’s policy regarding intent statements, including a copy of any intent statement forms used at each of your clinics in the last 10 years. 

5. Please indicate by year for the past 10 years, the number of instances in which a child has been delivered intact in the second trimester during an abortion conducted by one of your clinics, including cases in which this happened outside the clinic.  Please specify the protocols in place for infants born alive in the course of an abortion.  How many times have these protocols been used? What equipment for the care of infants born alive is available at each clinic performing abortions in the second trimester?  

6. Have your doctors during the abortion procedure ever attempted to keep fetal tissue and organs intact? If so, what methods were used to do so? 

7. Has anyone at your clinics ever modified or changed their abortion technique in order to increase the odds of preserving intact fetal tissue and organs? If so, what changes or modifications were made? If not, does your affiliate have a policy that expressly prohibits changes or modifications in procedure in order to increase the odds of preserving intact fetal tissue and organs?

8. What protocols do your clinics follow for the disposal of fetal remains? 

9. In the past 10 years have any of your clinics engaged in fetal tissue donation?  If yes, which clinics have engaged in fetal tissue donation and for each clinic please provide the following:

a. The name of the recipients (researchers, institutions, tissue procurement entities, etc.) to which the donation was made. 

b. The number of specimens provided to each recipient in each year and the total amount in income or reimbursement received from each recipient in each year.

c. A copy of all contracts between your affiliate or clinic and any recipients of fetal tissue donation.

d. A copy of the standard informed consent form used for fetal tissue donation.  If the form was changed at any time over the past 10 years please provide a copy of each version and the date the change(s) were or are in effect.  

In addition, please provide a copy of all abortion training materials or procedure protocols used at your clinics at any time in the past 10 years. For the past five years, please indicate what methods were used each year in each trimester and how many abortions were conducted using each method.


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WASHINGTON, D.C.— House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) today called on the Department of Justice (DOJ) to provide further information into the Department’s previous investigations into the altering of abortion procedures in order to obtain fetal body parts. 

The letter is part of the Judiciary Committee’s ongoing investigation into the acts of Planned Parenthood, and comes a month after Chairman Goodlatte sent a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch demanding further investigation by DOJ into potential violations of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act by Planned Parenthood.

Recent videos featuring executives from Planned Parenthood discuss the sale and possible alteration of abortion procedures in order to gain intact fetal body parts. The Committee is seeking further answers from DOJ in regards to the laws that govern such practices and their enforcement. Chairman Goodlatte’s letter to DOJ specifically states that “[N]ew evidence suggests that this disturbing practice of altering the procedure is more than an isolated instance.”

Based on the evidence presented in the videos featuring Planned Parenthood executives, Chairman Goodlatte has called upon DOJ to assess three federal laws that may be implicated by these videos, and expressed the Committee’s “interest in understanding the history of the enforcement of these laws at the Department of Justice.”

Below is the text of the letter. A copy of the signed letter can be found here.

August 17, 2015

The Honorable Loretta Lynch

Attorney General 

United States Department of Justice

Washington, DC 20530

Dear Attorney General Lynch:

The House Judiciary Committee has launched an investigation into whether Planned Parenthood abortionists altered procedures in order to harvest the organs and body parts of aborted children.  “I’d say a lot of people want liver,” an executive from Planned Parenthood stated in a video released on July 15, 2015. “And for that reason, most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance, so they’ll know where they’re putting their forceps.”  She further stated: “We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.”  

New evidence suggests that this disturbing practice of altering the procedure is more than an isolated instance. In a recent video released on July 21, 2015, yet another Planned Parenthood abortionist executive stated: 

Let me explain to you a little bit of a problem, which may not be a big problem, if our usual technique is suction at 10 to 12 weeks and we switch to using an IPAS [manual vacuum aspirator] or something with less suction or to increase the odds that it will come out as an intact specimen, then we’re kind of violating the protocol that says to the patient, “We’re not doing anything different in our care of you.” Now to me, that’s kind of a specious little argument and I wouldn’t object to asking Ian, who’s our surgeon who does the cases, to use an IPAS at that gestational age in order to increase the odds that he’s going to get an intact specimen.

Later in the video, when asked if she would be happy with the dollar amount per specimen suggested by the undercover investigative journalist, the Planned Parenthood abortionist executive stated: “Well, let me find out from other affiliates in California [what they] are getting and if they’re getting more, then we can discuss it then.” She continued, “But, you know, the money is not the important thing, but it has to be big enough that it’s worthwhile for me.”

At least three federal laws may be implicated by this video: 42 U.S.C. § 274e, which states that "[i]t shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human organ for valuable consideration for use in human transplantation if the transfer affects interstate commerce"; 42 U.S.C. § 289g, which states that “[i]t shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce”; and 18 U.S.C. § 1531, which prohibits partial-birth abortions.  

We write regarding our interest in understanding the history of the enforcement of these laws at the Department of Justice. Please provide the Committee with a copy of the complaint in every case filed by the Department in which a violation of 42 U.S.C. § 274e, 42 U.S.C. § 289g, or 18 U.S.C. § 1531, and any related federal laws, is alleged.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this request.  

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WASHINGTON, D.C.— House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) today condemned the Obama Administration’s lack of enforcement of immigration laws after reports of Victor Aureliano Martinez Ramirez, an unlawful immigrant, allegedly raped, tortured and murdered 64 year old Marilyn Pharis in Santa Maria, California in late July. 

According to news articles, Martinez has been in the United States illegally since at least 2009, and has avoided deportation because of local, state and federal policies that provide sanctuary to unlawful and even criminal immigrants. After a 2014 arrest for battery and possession of methamphetamine, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) lodged a detainer against Ramirez.  But the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s office refused to honor the detainer. According to the Santa Maria Police Chief, Ramirez has been arrested six times in just the last 15 months, most recently a mere eight days before Pharis’ murder. But because the Obama Administration’s removal priorities changed in late 2014, and ICE determined that Ramirez’s “case history showed he had no prior deportations or felony criminal convictions,” he was not deemed an enforcement priority under the changed removal priorities and ICE refused, this time, to lodge a detainer. Ramirez was simply released onto the streets of Santa Maria, free to murder Marilyn Pharis. Chairman Goodlatte released the following statement on the murder and the dangerous lack of commitment to immigration enforcement by local, state and federal agencies: 

“The Obama Administration’s callous disregard for our nation’s immigration laws has spiraled into public safety crisis that has manifested itself in the heinous murder of another innocent woman, this time a veteran of the United States Air Force. 

“The Obama Administration should be leading the way in immigration enforcement so states and localities can no longer ignore federal law and enact dangerous sanctuary policies.  Instead, this Administration’s misguided policy that only certain criminal convictions should render an unlawful immigrant a “priority” for removal – leads to countless crimes inflicted on Americans and legal immigrants.  How many Americans must die at the hands of unlawful criminal immigrants before the Obama Administration takes a serious look at the failure of its own policies?”


In July, the House Judiciary Committee’s Immigration and Border Security Subcommittee held a hearing on sanctuary city policies to examine dangerous policies adopted by some state and local governments that refuse to honor the federal government’s authority to enforce immigration laws, and the Obama Administration’s complicity in this problem. 

Chairman Goodlatte questioned witnesses regarding the best policies for the removal of criminal aliens before they commit more violent crimes in society. 

In late July, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3009, the Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act, which if enacted would be a good first step toward ending sanctuary city policies.  

Legislation authored by Immigration and Border Security Chairman Trey Gowdy – H.R. 1148, the Michael Davis, Jr. and Danny Oliver in Honor of State and Local Law Enforcement Act – contains the best legislative solution to end sanctuary cities and the Obama Administration’s policies that encourage them.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.— Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, today sent a letter to 162 public colleges and universities urging the institutions to update their free speech codes in order to foster freedoms under the First Amendment. 

The letter comes after the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) released a report detailing a list of public colleges and universities that received a “red light” rating. FIRE classifies a “red light” institution as “one that has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech.” 

Chairman Goodlatte requested that the institutions respond to the letter with “what steps your institution plans to take to promote free and open expression on its campus(es), including any steps toward bringing your speech policies in accordance with the First Amendment.”

Recently, the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice held a hearing examining First Amendment protections for students on public college and university campuses.  

Below is the text of the letter. A copy of the signed letter can be found here

Dear President [NAME],

The First Amendment prohibits the government, including governmental public colleges and universities, from infringing on free speech and the free exercise of religion.  The First Amendment states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble …” Yet despite these constitutional protections, speech-restrictive policies in our nation’s public colleges and universities remain. 

This development was the subject of a recent hearing of the House Committee on the Judiciary’s Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice titled “First Amendment Protections on Public College and University Campuses.” At that hearing, Greg Lukianoff, President and CEO of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (“FIRE”), testified that “[s]peech codes—policies prohibiting student and faculty speech that would, outside the bounds of campus, be protected by the First Amendment—have repeatedly been struck down by federal and state courts. Yet they persist, even in the very jurisdictions where they have been ruled unconstitutional. The majority of American colleges and universities maintain speech codes.”

In FIRE’s Spotlight on Speech Codes 2015, your institution received a “red light” rating. According to FIRE, a “red light” institution “is one that has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech.” They define a “clear” restriction as a policy that on its face is a threat to free speech and “does not depend on how the policy is applied.” They define a “substantial” restriction as a policy that is “broadly applicable” to speech on campus. We write to ask what steps your institution plans to take to promote free and open expression on its campus(es), including any steps toward bringing your speech policies in accordance with the First Amendment.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.— House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law Chairman Tom Marino (R-Pa.) issued the following statement following Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Edith Ramirez’s announcement that the FTC is issuing guidance on its unfair methods of competition authority contained in section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (FTC Act):

“Today, for the first time in over 100 years, the FTC has voluntarily announced rules of the road for its exercise of section 5 authority over unfair methods of competition. This historic action comes on the heels of the Committee’s repeated demands that the FTC provide guidance on this authority. This is a good first step and we are pleased that the FTC has finally heeded the Committee’s calls for guidance. However, we will vigilantly monitor the manner in which the FTC applies its guidance and evaluate whether additional action is necessary to ensure that the FTC administers our antitrust laws in a transparent, stable, fair, and predictable manner and that it does not exceed its statutory authority.” 


Since the enactment of the FTC Act in 1914, the FTC has never issued guidance regarding whether, and to what extent, its section 5 unfair methods of competition authority reaches beyond the confines of the Clayton Act and Sherman Act.  On October 23, 2013, Chairman Goodlatte led a letter to the FTC urging it to issue section 5 guidance. Additionally, this issue was one of the primary topics covered in the Committee’s two most recent oversight hearings of the antitrust enforcement agencies, available here and here.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.— House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) today joined Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law Subcommittee Chairman Tom Marino (R-Pa.) in the introduction of the Require Evaluation before Implementing Executive Wishlists Act of 2015 (REVIEW Act) (H.R. 3438). Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) and Senator James Lankford (R-Okla.) introduced companion legislation in the Senate (S. 1927).

The legislation would automatically stay the effective dates of new regulations that would cost the economy over one billion dollars when prompt legal challenges to these costliest of rules are filed in court.  The stays would remain in place until the legal challenges are finally resolved by the courts. 

Goodlatte: “The regulatory burden Washington passes along to the American people is badly exacerbated when billions of dollars of unnecessary compliance costs must be expended during ultimately successful challenges to unlawful regulations. The bill introduced today will prevent the waste imposed by regulations that the courts ultimately will reject.  This will free precious dollars to be spent on the jobs and investment America needs to fully recover from economic hard times. I commend Subcommittee Chairman Marino for introducing this important legislation, and I look forward to working with him and our colleagues in the United States Senate to stop the avalanche of regulatory costs that are burdening the American taxpayer.”

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Ranking Member John Conyers (D-Mich.) today issued the following statement on the House Judiciary Committee’s bipartisan criminal justice reform initiative: 

“Earlier this summer, the House Judiciary Committee listened to House Members’ ideas and proposals for criminal justice reform. Following the Committee’s listening session, we are working together over the August break with the goal of crafting bipartisan solutions to address the issues facing our criminal justice system. Together, we will pursue responsible, common sense criminal justice reforms to make sure our federal laws and regulations effectively and appropriately punish wrongdoers, protect individual freedom, safeguard civil liberties, work as efficiently and fairly as possible, do not impede state efforts, and do not waste taxpayer dollars. We plan to introduce bipartisan legislation this September so that our criminal justice system better achieves justice and reflects core American values.”

Background: In June, Chairman Goodlatte and Ranking Member Conyers announced a criminal justice reform initiative. Over the coming months, the House Judiciary Committee, which has primary jurisdiction over the U.S. Criminal Code, will take a step-by-step approach to address a variety of criminal justice issues, including over-criminalization, sentencing reform, prison and reentry reform, protecting citizens through improved criminal procedures and policing strategies, and civil asset forfeiture reform. To begin this process, on June 25, 2015 the House Judiciary Committee held a criminal justice reform listening session and heard from over a dozen Members of Congress on this issue. 

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I am pleased to be here today at this important hearing, to examine the growing epidemic of heroin abuse in our nation.

Over the past several months, we have seen an alarming increase in both the availability and use of heroin. This has, not surprisingly, had profound and tragic consequences. Every day, it seems, brings new stories of overdose deaths occurring across the country, including in my district.  Since January, there have been 11 heroin-related overdoses in the Roanoke Valley, resulting in nine deaths.

Earlier this year, the Washington Post reported that the legalization and subsequent availability of high-grade marijuana to American consumers has led Mexican drug cartels to increase the amounts of heroin and methamphetamine they are trafficking across the U.S.-Mexico border.  Since 2009, heroin seizures along the border have nearly tripled, as law enforcement seized 2,181 kilograms of Mexican heroin last year alone.  

These are alarming statistics.  However, the grim reality is that they should surprise no one.  Drug trafficking is an extremely profitable business, run by criminals who are interested in one thing:  money.  Given the increasing availability of marijuana in the United States, and the related, ongoing epidemic of heroin use, drug traffickers have decided to cash in on the misery of American citizens.

Additionally, the Drug Enforcement Administration estimates that the United States has 600,000 heroin users, which is three times the number in 2012.  Tragically, that number is expected to rise.  That is because there are an estimated 10 million Americans who are currently addicted to prescription opioids, including such drugs as Vicodin, OxyContin, and Percocet.  Once someone is addicted to a prescription opioid, the need to satisfy their addiction outweighs the stigma attached to heroin use.  Additionally, it is far easier to pay $10 for a dose of heroin than $80 for an oxycodone tablet.

It is no exaggeration to say that heroin use has reached epidemic levels across this nation, including in my home state of Virginia.  It is not an urban problem, or a rural problem, but an American public health and safety problem.

However, despite the increase in heroin and meth production, despite the ongoing heroin epidemic, despite the dramatic surge in deaths, and despite the clear evidence that illicit controlled substances, and their purveyors, pose a lethal threat to the American people, the Obama Administration has continued to shirk its duty to protect this nation from dangerous narcotics.  

I firmly believe any solution to the heroin epidemic must have three parts: (1) discouraging the use of this dangerous, highly addictive drug; (2) providing appropriate treatment to addicts; and (3) ensuring law enforcement zealously pursues the criminals who bring this poison into our communities.

I look forward to our witnesses’ testimony today.

VIDEO of Opening Statement - Click Here.

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Goodlatte at Hearing on Growing Heroin Epidemic

2015-07-28 14:22:57

Goodlatte Bill Advances Secret Service Reforms

2015-07-27 20:11:08

Goodlatte Speaks in Support of the Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act

2015-07-23 18:31:43

Goodlatte Gives Opening Statement at Sanctuary City Hearing

2015-07-23 14:39:14

Goodlatte Questions Homeland Security Secretary at Oversight Hearing

2015-07-14 15:18:38

Goodlatte Speaks in Support of Amendment to Protect States' Rights

2015-07-08 16:36:34

Goodlatte Speaks in Support of COOL Repeal

2015-06-10 19:07:32

Goodlatte Speaks in Support of Commodity End-User Relief Act

2015-06-09 20:15:35

Goodlatte Urges Senate to Pass USA Freedom Act Without Amendment

2015-06-01 21:45:38

Goodlatte on CNN's New Day: Pass USA Freedom Act Today

2015-05-31 12:25:10

CNN's New Day: Goodlatte Urges Senate to Act on USA Freedom Act

2015-05-18 14:17:39

Goodlatte Supports Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

2015-05-13 19:44:13

Goodlatte Statement at Hearing on Stakeholder Perspectives on ICANN

2015-05-13 14:51:36

Goodlatte Speaks in Support of the National Blue Alert Act

2015-05-12 21:32:28

House Judiciary Committee Marks-Up USA Freedom Act

2015-04-30 14:23:38

Goodlatte Discusses DEA Administrator's Decision to Step Down

2015-04-22 13:13:38

Goodlatte on DEA Misconduct: What is Being Done to Hold Them Accountable?

2015-03-27 13:38:45

Goodlatte Questions FCC's Net Neutrality Rule

2015-03-25 19:11:40

Goodlatte: Wrecking the Internet to Save It? The FCC’s Net Neutrality Rule

2015-03-25 18:48:17

Goodlatte: There is a serious morale/discipline problem at the Secret Service

2015-03-17 12:40:24

Contact Information

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Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-5431
Fax 202-225-9681

Committee Assignments



Bob Goodlatte represents the Sixth Congressional District of Virginia in the United States House of Representatives.

Bob’s service to the people of the Sixth District began in 1977 when he became District Director for former Congressman Caldwell Butler. He served in this position for two years until 1979, and was responsible for helping folks across the District seeking assistance with or encountering problems from various federal agencies. In 1979, he founded his own private law practice in Roanoke. Later, he was a partner in the law firm of Bird, Kinder and Huffman, working there from 1981 until taking office.

In the 113th Congress, Bob was elected to serve as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.  He is the first Judiciary Committee Chairman from Virginia in the last 125 years.  Bob has been an active Member of the Judiciary Committee since arriving in Congress, serving in a variety of leadership positions on the Committee including Chairman of the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet in the 112th Congress, Vice Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee and Ranking Member of the Task Force on Judicial Impeachment in the 111th Congress, Ranking Member of the Antitrust Task Force in the 110th Congress, and Vice Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property in the 109th Congress. Additionally, Bob also served on the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security.

The House Judiciary Committee will certainly be at the forefront of some of the most significant issues facing Virginia and the Sixth District, including protecting Constitutional freedoms and civil liberties, oversight of the U.S. Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, legal and regulatory reform, innovation, competition and anti-trust laws, terrorism and crime, and immigration reform.  It is likely that many of these issues will be the deciding factors in determining the future direction of our nation.  The jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee is well-suited to many of Bob’s legislative priorities such as protecting Constitutional rights, including private property and Second Amendment rights, securing our borders through immigration reform, strengthening our criminal laws, decreasing health care costs through medical malpractice reform, and oversight of the Judicial branch and Administration.  One of Bob’s top legislative initiatives is his Constitutional amendment to require a balanced federal budget so that Congress will be forced to control spending.  The Judiciary Committee has jurisdiction over all proposed amendments to the Constitution.

In addition to serving on the House Judiciary Committee, Bob serves on the House Agriculture Committee.  He is a member of the Subcommittee on Livestock, Rural Development, and Credit, which is of particular importance to the Sixth District since it is one of the leading turkey and poultry producing districts in the nation.  He also serves on the Subcommittee on Department Operations, Oversight, and Nutrition.  Bob has served the Agriculture Committee in a variety of leadership roles including Chairman of the Agriculture Committee (2003-2007), Ranking Member of the Agriculture Committee (2007-2008), Vice Chairman of the Agriculture Committee (2011-2012), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Department Operations, Oversight, Nutrition and Forestry (1997-2003), and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy and Research (2009-2010).

During his time in Congress, Bob has made a name for himself as a leader on Internet and high-tech issues. He is Co-Chair of the Congressional Internet Caucus and the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus as well as Chairman of the House Republican Technology Working Group.

Bob is a graduate of Washington and Lee University School of Law, and his undergraduate degree in Government was earned at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine. He resides in Roanoke with his wife, Maryellen.  He and Maryellen have been married since 1974 and have two adult children, Jennifer and Rob.

Serving With

Rob Wittman


Scott Rigell


J. Randy Forbes


Robert Hurt


Dave Brat


Morgan Griffith


Barbara Comstock


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