October 15th, 2009
05:44 PM ET
5 years ago

Arkansas GOP candidate scales back ties to firm

Republican attorney Tim Griffin is running for Congress in Arkansas.
Republican attorney Tim Griffin is running for Congress in Arkansas.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Tim Griffin, the former U.S. Attorney and Karl Rove aide now running for Congress in Arkansas, has "scaled back" his relationship with his own political consulting firm because of his campaign, according to an aide.

But Griffin has not completely cut his ties with the firm, which has recently taken in tens of thousands of dollars from at least one other Republican office-seeker.

The Bush administration veteran, who was once described by the late columnist Robert Novak as "a leading practitioner of opposition research," founded his Little Rock-based firm in 2007 after resigning his post as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas. Griffin's tenure with the Justice Department was rocky - questions surfaced as to whether Rove urged the dismissal of Griffin's predecessor and other U.S. Attorneys for political reasons.

Griffin, who also has a law firm in Little Rock, announced his bid to challenge Democrat Rep. Vic Snyder last month. Before jumping into the race, his firm, Griffin Public Affairs LLC, took in three payments totaling more than $30,000 from the campaign of Gresham Barrett, the South Carolina GOP congressman now running for governor in that state.

Emily Wood, a spokesman for Griffin, said the Republican "still has Griffin Public Affairs, LLC, but has scaled back his work because of his congressional campaign." She said the firm "generally provides communications and policy services," but does not disclose details of its work for clients.

Melanie Sloan, the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said there is nothing improper about doing consulting work for other candidates while also running for office.

Barrett spokesman B.J. Boling told CNN that the payments to Griffin's firm were for "policy research and backgrounders." Barrett is currently in the middle of a tough five-way fight for the South Carolina GOP gubernatorial nomination.

Wood, the spokesman for Griffin, confirmed that the firm did work for Barrett but is no longer doing so.

According to the Barrett campaign's most recent financial disclosure, the campaign made three payments to Griffin's firm this summer: $9,375 on July 1; $23, 871 on July 7; and $3,537.50 on August 6. The July 7 payment was the Barrett campaign's largest expenditure of the third quarter reporting period.


Filed under: Arkansas • South Carolina
soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Rick

    JUST cannot cut off that $$$$$ stream! Why? Be your OWN! Espouse your own thoughts, not the party spew! Be yourself, it's probably 400%+ better.

    October 15, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  2. dennisk

    Sorry, but anyone who gets within ten feet of Turd Blossom is tainted meat.

    October 15, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  3. southerncousin

    Okay, I am trying to figure out why this is a story. Is it because CNN and its liberal supporters are not used to someone running for office that is not on the government dole and acutally works for a living. Is it some sort of manifestation of the Bush Derangement Syndrome which infects practically all liberals? Is it part of the class warfare strategy developed by the DNC to demonize against who operate a successful business? While the libitard most idolized by the state run media is visiting New Orleans and treating Mississippi like he treats FOX News, because it is a republican state, CNN chooses this whatever as a story.

    October 15, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  4. Mickey, NY

    Another Republican anti-american terrorist joins the fray...

    October 15, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  5. kman821

    My guess is Griffin will be dispatched quickly from the race once a little "oppostion reseach" data is dug up on him! If he was associated with Rove, he's hiding something! What goes around ... comes around Timbo!

    October 15, 2009 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  6. bam

    "Don't pay any attention to that man behind the curtain." Republicans think we're all too stupid to understand that who they pretend to be today may not be the same person as who they really were yesterday.

    October 15, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  7. Jackie in Dallas

    I'm not a big fan of the GOP right now, but let's get real here. It IS his company. What he is doing is not unethical specifically. The amounts received for July and August for the Barrett campaign wouldn't even buy a 15-second ad during peak times on a tv station!

    On the other hand, much of what he is doing is supporting lobbying from what I can discover. Do we need more of that?

    October 15, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  8. Scrape Them Off Your Shoes And Toss Them

    If he had anything to do with Karl-let-them-eat-cake-Rove, I'd like to see his political career take a long walk off a short pier. I'm just saying...

    Obama/Biden 2012

    October 15, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  9. Debbie

    Associated in any way shape or form with Karl Rove would make me run as fast and far from the guy as possible!

    October 15, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  10. LacrosseMom(stuck in moderation)

    WHO would vote for anyone associated with Karl Rove????

    EIGHT YEARS OF GOP POWERMONGERS IS ENOUGH, FOLKS!

    October 15, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  11. Kathy

    Well, he's a poster child for the Bush administration! This is the guy who got his position by having one of the US Attorneys fired so he could have their job. No one should trust anyone associated with Rove.

    October 15, 2009 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  12. S M R

    This Guy is a CROOK

    October 15, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  13. D. Tree

    Republican culture of corruption. This guy was one of the worst offenders.

    October 15, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  14. Cynthia - Arkansas

    Even though a Republican always wins the Presidential vote, we have almost solid Democrats in every position in the state. It's weird.

    I'm not a Blanche Lincoln fan, but she's better than a Republican anyday!

    October 15, 2009 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  15. ThinkAgain

    Bush called it best when he nicknamed Rove "Turd Blossom." Rove is a waste of oxygen and space.

    October 15, 2009 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  16. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    Again, it is still about the GOP and money isn't it. Just what we need is a ROVE clone running around.

    October 15, 2009 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. g

    did he say rove , carl rove good luck

    October 15, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  18. NOT THE KINDA GUY TO SAY I TOLD YOU SO, BUT I TOLD YOU SO

    I cant stop laughing! ACORN rigs the election and this is what the liberal fascist media chooses to focus on. Just like liberal politicians, the media is not in touch with America. One day maybe those on the left will realize that the silent majority of america, which does not live in east and west coast socialist bastions, college campuses, and latin America, runs this country. No more ACORN, no more rigged elections.

    October 15, 2009 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  19. Danny, CO

    Too late, we already know he's a dirtbag.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    October 15, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  20. KKKarl

    Karl: Are you ready for the big time?

    Timmy: I think so.

    Karl: Remember, you have to pretend you care, but don't. As soon as you can, throw your people under the bus because your real constituents are big business. Got that?

    Timmy: Yeah, thanks Karl, I'll remember.

    October 15, 2009 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  21. m smith

    Gosh if that where a democrate they would have a field day. Just another white southern good ol boy.

    October 15, 2009 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  22. Lacrossepunk

    Go,dude, go, beat the heck out of that liberal goof.

    October 15, 2009 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  23. Denis

    The REPUBLICAN PARTY is regularly referred to by its nickname (G.O.P.). This nickname, as we all know, means the “Grand Old Party”, but a more fitting meaning for G.O.P. should be “GREEDY OFFENSIVE PATHETIC”. The Republican Party has earned this new nickname because of the Party’s past and current bad decisions, questionable actions and not-so-GRAND behaviour.

    The “OLD” can possibly stay but this “PARTY” is not much of a National Party anymore, one that reflects the diversity and openness that has made America great but a Party that more and more represents, narrow-minded, primarily white, ultra-conservative, mean-spirited, voters who resist constructive change, a sensitivity to the needs of its people and not to its corporations. You know the folks that relate to the “RUSH” type.

    Having occasionally voted Republican, it is very sad situation that more voters and I now only have restrictive choices for our Political Representatives and Leadership.

    October 15, 2009 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  24. Grayson's Anatomy: Jesus Christ the Son of God Against StOoPiD Dumb Ass Republicans

    Oh my God! Why is this idiot Republican in the news? He is another Bush-Cheney prototype whose main objective is to ensure that all hope for the middle-class is destroyed for eternity. Please – somebody with some brains from Arkansas give us a hint that after 8 years of the BUSH Apocalypse that you have more intelligence than to vote for another Bush-bin-Ladin co-conspirator.

    October 15, 2009 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |