|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Virginia's 9th district
January 3, 2011
|Majority Leader of the Virginia House of Delegates|
January 12, 2000 - December 5, 2010
|Member of the Virginia House of Delegates|
from the 8th district
January 12, 1994 - January 3, 2011
|G. Steven Agee|
Howard Morgan Griffith
March 15, 1958
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Education||Emory and Henry College (BA)|
Washington and Lee University (JD)
Howard Morgan Griffith (born March 15, 1958) is an American politician who has been the U.S. Representative for Virginia's 9th congressional district since 2011. The district covers a large swath of southwestern Virginia, including the New River Valley and the Virginia side of the Tri-Cities. He is a member of the Republican Party and the Freedom Caucus.
He was the majority leader of the Virginia House of Delegates and represented the 8th District, serving from 1994 until 2011. The district included all of Salem, Virginia and parts of Roanoke County.
Griffith was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but his family moved to Salem, Virginia while he was a baby. He attended Andrew Lewis High School, graduating in 1976. He attended Emory and Henry College, graduating in 1980. Griffith completed his education with a J.D. from the Washington and Lee University School of Law in 1983.
After law school, Griffith settled in Salem where he worked as a private attorney with a focus on traffic violations and DUI. On June 23, 2008, Albo & Oblon LLP, a law firm run by fellow Republican delegate Dave Albo, announced that Griffith was joining the firm as head of its new Roanoke/Salem office.
Griffith first became seriously involved in politics in 1986, when he was chosen as the chairman of the Salem Republican Party. He held that position from 1986 to 1988 and from 1991 to 1994.
In 1993, Griffith was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates, defeating Democrat Howard C. Packett. He served as the Vice-Chairman of the Rules Committee in the House of Delegates. He served on the Courts of Justice Committee, and was the chairman of its Criminal Law Subcommittee. He also served on the Commerce and Labor and the Militia, Police, and Public Safety Committees. He was elected House Majority Leader in 2000 and was the first Republican to hold that position in Virginia's history.
Griffith was the Republican nominee to face longtime U.S. Congressman Rick Boucher, who was first elected in 1982. His home in Salem was just outside the 9th's borders at the time; it was in the 6th District of fellow Republican Bob Goodlatte. However, most of his House of Delegates district was in the 9th.
Griffith jumped into the race after Boucher voted for the cap and trade bill. Boucher made much of the fact that Griffith didn't live in the district. In turn, Griffith branded Boucher as a rubber stamp for Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi. Griffith narrowly won the election.
Griffith defeated Democratic nominee Anthony Flaccavento 61.3 percent to 38.6 percent.
Griffith defeated Democrat Derek Kitts and Independent Janice Boyd with 68.59% of the vote.
In 2018, Griffith faces two Democratic opponents, Anthony Flaccavento and Justin Santopietro, and a Whig opponent, Scott Blankenship,
|2010||95,726||51.2%||Rick Boucher||86,743||46.4%||Jeremiah Heaton||Independent||4,282||2.3%|
|2014||117,465||72.15%||no candidate||William Carr||Independent||39,412||24.21%|
|2016||212,838||68.6%||Derek Kitts||87,877||28.3%||Janice Allen Boyd||Independent||9,050||2.9%|
Griffith has voted to allow the Commonwealth of Virginia to enforce federal immigration laws to criminalize knowingly employing illegal immigrants or undocumented workers, and also voted to criminalize possession of firearms by illegal aliens.
While serving in the Virginia House of Delegates, Griffith supported a constitutional amendment to prohibit same-sex marriage by defining marriage as between one man and one woman. He voted in favor of a motion to effectively kill a bill to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation for government employees in Virginia.
In 2017, Griffith voted to nullify the Stream Protection Rule, which included improvements in the protection of water supplies, water quality, streams, fish and other wildlife that have the potential to be negatively affected by surface coal mining. That same year, Griffith joined other members of the House of Representatives in passing an amendment to H.R. 3354, which undermined the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ability to enforce environmental standards in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, which covers six states and the District of Columbia.
Griffith is a proponent of "an 'all of the above' energy strategy" that utilizes both fossil fuel and renewable energy sources. In 2011, Griffith joined other GOP members in urging Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to reconsider the ban on offshore drilling off Virginia's coast.
Griffith voted in favor of several bills to reduce restrictions on gun ownership, including a bill to allow concealed weapons in vehicles without a permit and to allow concealed weapons permit holders to carry their firearms in restaurants and bars. Griffith also voted to prohibit consumption of alcohol while in possession of a concealed weapon. In 2004 Griffith voted to prohibit carrying firearms or ammunition in the non-secure areas of airport terminals, including baggage claim areas.
Early in 2010, Griffith voted in favor of a bill to prohibit any individual mandate to purchase health insurance. This law passed Virginia's legislature before the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was enacted, which Virginia has used to challenge the individual mandate in federal court. However, on July 17, 2013 Griffith was the lone GOP member of the House to vote against delaying the implementation of the individual mandate.
Just prior to the United States federal government shutdown of 2013, Griffith issued press release in which he endorsed the final House version of Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2014, which would have continued funding for federal government operations while delaying implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Griffith voted against the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2014, the Senate-proposed compromise that ended the shutdown without defunding the Affordable Care Act.
When surveyed in 1999 on his political positions by Project Vote Smart, Griffith indicated that he supports legalized abortion in the first trimester and to save the life of the mother, while favoring the restriction of abortion through parental notification laws and prohibition of partial-birth abortion. Griffith's voting record has generally been consistent with his 1999 survey, voting in favor of restrictions on late term abortions such as parental-notification and parental-consent, while voting against bills that would restrict first-term abortions. In 2010 Griffith voted to restrict state funding of abortions, and to require abortion clinics to meet the same licensing requirements as surgical centers. In 2006 Griffith voted to restrict state funding for fetal stem cell research.
In 2007 Griffith voted against  a bill in the Virginia General Assembly, HB 2797, which stated: "That life begins at the moment of fertilization and the right to enjoyment of life guaranteed by Article 1, § 1 of the Constitution of Virginia is vested in each born and preborn human being from the moment of fertilization"
Griffith's 2010 campaign website reported that Griffith has a "100% pro-life" voting record and an "A" rating from the Virginia Society for Human Life (VSHL). However, VSHL's report on 2007 legislation in Virginia omits reference to HB 2797 Project Vote Smart indicated that Griffith declined to take their survey again in 2010.
Griffith supports raising the retirement age and reducing the number of American troops serving overseas as means of reducing the federal budget deficit. Most recently, Griffith voted in favor of the November 2017 tax plan.
In 2014, Griffith introduced legislation to move marijuana from a Schedule I to a Schedule II narcotic, which would effectively make the drug legal for medical purposes under federal law.
|Virginia House of Delegates|
G. Steven Agee
| Member of the Virginia House of Delegates
from the 8th district
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 9th congressional district
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
| United States Representatives by seniority