GOP rep: Farenthold should step down, reimburse taxpayers for $84K harassment settlement
© Greg Nash

Rep. Barbara ComstockBarbara Jean ComstockHouse Republican backs bill to overhaul DC Metro Poll: Voters in vulnerable GOP districts oppose tax bill Giffords targets 8 Republicans on conceal and carry in new ads MORE (Va.) is calling on fellow Republican Rep. Blake FarentholdRandolph (Blake) Blake FarentholdConyers attorney: Congressman won't pay settlement back because it was 'cleared' Farenthold accuser: 'It's been a tough road’ Accuser says GOP lawmaker 'blackballed' her from finding another job after settling sexual harassment suit MORE (Texas) to step down and reimburse taxpayers over a sexual harassment settlement.

"[H]e should pay back the money to the taxpayers," Comstock's deputy chief of staff Jeff Marschner told Politico.

"The Congresswoman would welcome a waiving of the nondisclosure agreement so the parties can come forward, particularly since we have not heard from the woman involved directly as we have in other cases.”

Farenthold reportedly used $84,000 in taxpayer funds in 2015 to settle a claim from his former communications director Lauren Greene, who said in her lawsuit that the Texas Republican told her he had "sexual fantasies" and "wet dreams" about her. Green said Farenthold told her in 2014 that he was "estranged from his wife and had not had sex with her in years."


Comstock — who authored a House resolution requiring annual sexual harassment awareness training for all members and staff — called for Farenthold to reimburse the full $84,000 and for both sides in the lawsuit to waive their confidentiality agreements so that full testimonies can be heard. 

Marschner confirmed that Comstock also thinks Farenthold should resign, a break with Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees House Republican: 'I worry about both sides' of the aisle on DACA Overnight Health Care: 3.6M signed up for ObamaCare in first month | Ryan pledges 'entitlement reform' next year | Dems push for more money to fight opioids MORE (R-Wis.), whose office said that he will not call on Farenthold to step down because the Office of Congressional Ethics investigated the claims against Farenthold and found no "substantial reason to believe" them, Politico reported.

The Hill has reached out to Comstock for comment.