A House ethics investigation into Rep. Raúl Grijalva is still underway, even though the Tucson Democrat agreed to a settlement two years ago with a former staffer who filed a hostile workplace complaint.

Grijalva, chairman of the Natural Resources Committee, confirmed on Friday that the House Ethics Committee is continuing to investigate allegations that he created a hostile work environment.

The unnamed staffer in her complaint in 2015 also accused the Tucson Democrat of being drunk on the job.

Grijalva — who is bound by a confidential agreement related to the settlement — has repeatedly said the $48,395 settlement isn’t related in any way to sexual harassment and that he has never been drunk on the job.

On Friday, Grijalva signaled he was fully cooperating with the investigation.

"I welcome any further look into this matter because I’m confident it will fully exonerate me, and I’m excited to see it completed as soon as possible. I look forward to full vindication and prove that I have always created a positive work environment for my staff and conducted myself professionally," he said.

In December, the House Committee on Ethics voted to dismiss a related complaint against Grijalva, one that argued that the settlement with the former staffer misspent taxpayer dollars. 

The letter, signed by the committee’s chairwoman, Indiana Republican Susan Brooks, and its ranking member, Florida Democrat Theodore Deutch, unanimously voted to dismiss the allegation.

The settlement has long been used to criticize the Tucson Democrat with both former Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and Grijalva's 2018 Republican opponent, Nick Pierson, repeatedly pointing to it as evidence that Grijalva was unfit for office. 


Joe has been with the Star for six years. He covers politics as well as the city of Tucson and other municipalities in Southern Arizona. He graduated from the UA and previously worked for the Arizona Daily Sun.