Two very different Virginia congressmen will be key players in climate fight

Two very different Virginia congressmen will be key players in climate fight
Reps. Donald McEachin, D-4th, and Morgan Griffith, R-9th, are two of the 15 members selected to serve on the new House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. (Source: file photo)

WASHINGTON — Two Virginians with starkly different views on climate change have landed seats on a new U.S. House committee set up to tackle the hot-button issue.

Reps. Donald McEachin, D-4th, and Morgan Griffith, R-9th, are two of the 15 members selected to serve on the new House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. Virginia is the only state with members serving on the committee from both sides of the aisle.

The new committee, according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., “will spearhead Democrats’ work to develop innovative, effective solutions to prevent and reverse the climate crisis.”

The committee, led by chairwoman Kathy Castor, D-Fla., resembles another select committee on global warming — largely a messaging panel with no legislative authority — that Pelosi and her allies assembled the last time Democrats held the House majority. Republicans quashed that committee when they gained control of the chamber in 2011.

The panel is expected to start holding climate hearings soon, putting both McEachin and Griffith on center stage as the polarizing political battle heats up on Capitol Hill.

The Virginia Mercury is a new, nonpartisan, nonprofit news organization covering Virginia government and policy.