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How to: Conduct Oversight from a Minority Office

Trying to get answers when you don’t have a gavel can be hard. While "hard" formal investigative powers — such as subpoenas, depositions, ​hearings, and contempt proceedings may not be available — they are not the only tools at your disposal. Learn how to get creative with new partners and new approa

Feb 04, 2022 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


  • Chris Barkley, Deputy Chief of Staff and Policy Director, Senator Mitt Romney. Chris Barkley is deputy chief of staff and policy director for Senator Mitt Romney, where he leads the senator’s policy and legislative initiatives in the Senate. He has nearly two decades of experience on Capitol Hill, having served in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, including in leadership, committee and personal office positions. In his work for Sen. Romney, he negotiated and helped draft major bipartisan legislation, including the December 2020 COVID relief bill and the August 2021 infrastructure bill. In addition, he acted as a chief advisor to Senator Romney through two impeachment trials.
  • Cathy Yu, Senior Counselor, U.S. Department of Labor. Cathy currently serves as Senior Counselor at the U.S. Department of Labor, where she manages the Department’s oversight responses in addition to other issues. Before joining the Department, Cathy was the Director of Labor and Health Oversight at the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor under Chairman Bobby Scott. During her eight years on the Hill, Cathy also served as the Staff Director of the Economic Opportunity Subcommittee on the Veterans’ Affairs Committee under Ranking Member Tim Walz and as Senior Counsel on both the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and the Senate Special Committee on Aging as part of Senator McCaskill’s oversight and investigations team. Before her time in DC, she was an Assistant Attorney General of Illinois, an Assistant Counsel to the Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives, and began her career as a litigator in the Chicago office of DLA Piper. Cathy has a Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and is a graduate of the University of Chicago Law School. 

The session was hosted and moderated by Tim Stretton, Director of POGO's Congressional Oversight Initiative.

This virtual training is only open to staff in Congress, GAO, and CRS. We will record the presentation and may post it publicly. The Q&A portion will be off the record and will not be posted.