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Comer: Democrats are More Committed to Politics than the Oversight Committee’s Mission

WASHINGTON — House Committee on Oversight and Reform Ranking Member James Comer (R-Ky.) opened today’s hearing on “Examining the NFL’s Handling of Workplace Misconduct at the Washington Commanders” by emphasizing no individual should face harassment in the workplace, but that Congress is not the proper forum to examine workplace misconduct in a single private organization. Ranking Member Comer called on Democrats to return the Oversight Committee to its mission to hold the federal government accountable and conduct oversight of the Biden Administration’s self-inflicted crises affecting Americans today. Ranking Member Comer pointed out that if Democrats want to conduct oversight of toxic workplace environments, they must investigate allegations of bullying, harassment, and retaliation at President Biden’s Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Below are Ranking Member Comer’s remarks as prepared for delivery.

A toxic work environment is one in which staff fear meeting or even talking to leadership.

Where staff is humiliated, or worse, demoted.

Where employees are retaliated against for raising questions about possible ethical breaches.

Where did this take place?

Steps away from the Oval Office. At the Office of Science and Technology Policy within the Executive Office of the President. 

When?

It started shortly after President Biden’s inauguration in 2021.

The very day he was inaugurated, the President said “I’m not joking when I say this: If you ever work with me and I hear you treat another colleague with disrespect, talk down to someone, I will fire you on the spot. No ifs, ands or buts.”

It did not take long for those words to ring hollow.

The White House Counsel’s Office had well-documented allegations for a year, but it refused to hold bad actors accountable.

For all we know, the problems in the Office of Science and Technology Policy may still be happening.

Have we had a single hearing about the hostile work environment at President Biden’s top science office? 

No.

Have Democrats even sent a single oversight letter about it?

No.

A core responsibility is of this Committee is to conduct oversight of the executive branch.

But this entire Congress, Democrats have turned a blind eye to the Biden Administration.

Instead, the Oversight Committee is investigating a single private organization for workplace misconduct that took place years ago. 

Let me be clear: no one should be subjected to a hostile work environment. Bad actors must be held accountable.

The workplace misconduct that is the topic of today’s hearing has already been subject to investigations, fines, settlements, and intense media scrutiny.

New leadership has been installed and improved workplace policies implemented—without congressional involvement.

During the Democrats’ so-called investigation, the Committee has held a roundtable, two transcribed interviews, two depositions, and now this hearing. 

Democrats, whose top economic concern is that the NFL is not collecting enough money, even urged the Federal Trade Commission to open an investigation based on the sole testimony of one former employee with an axe to grind.

Democrats’ playbook is to focus on the past and ignore the present and future.

All these taxpayer dollars and staff hours to reinvestigate what had already been investigated.

No new punishments have been levied against the Commanders due to this investigation because they have already faced consequences for their hostile workplace.

No new relief has been granted to any of the aggrieved parties because Congress has no authority to provide relief in any of these instances.

No additional workplace improvements have been made due to this investigation, because—unlike at the Office of Science and Technology Policy—the workplace overhaul had already begun.

I would ask why Congress must “tackle” an NFL football team’s workplace and not a White House office or our own members, but I think we know the answer.

Democrats are more committed to politics than our Committee’s mission.

Our Committee’s mission is government efficiency and effectiveness. 

Our Committee’s mission is to protect taxpayerdollars from government fraud, waste, and mismanagement.

Our Committee’s mission is to hold government officials accountable.

Instead of conducting oversight of the federal government, Democrats investigate the private sector.

While our nation struggles under the weight of growing inflation and rising gas prices, Democrats are demanding oil and gas companies decrease production.

The Chairwoman even subpoenaed them after they produced thousands of documents!

While Americans are suffering from the effects of President Biden’s border crisis, including fentanyl streaming across the border and killing our teens, Democrats have examined pay checks for soccer stars and held numerous hearings to demonize the oil and gas industry and push their radical climate agenda.

While mothers are struggling to find infant formula on store shelves, Democrats held a hearing on pet flea and tick collars.

It’s no surprise that a nonpartisan organization gave Democrats an “F” in oversight. This Committee is failing the American people.

I urge the Chairwoman to get back to the core mission of the Oversight Committee and do what the American people elected us to do—conduct oversight over the federal government and the Biden Administration, which is on a path to destroy America.

Let’s hold hearings and conduct oversight of the crises affecting Americans today.

Forty-year high inflation, skyrocketing gas prices, out of stock baby formula, a raging border crisis, surging fentanyl overdoses, and our tanking stock market.

The American people expect us to be their voice in Washington.

It’s past time we start doing what we were sent here to do.

Thank you, I yield back.

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Author: Chris Okey

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