Lugar fears loss of influence of beloved Senate Foreign Relations Committee

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But he acknowledge that “retaining members has become an increasing challenge in recent years.” 

“On the Republican side, the Conference rule prohibiting simultaneous service on any two of the so called “Super A” committees – Appropriations, Armed Services, Finance, and Foreign Relations – has led to many short tenures on our Committee.  Conference Rules on the other side of the aisle are more lenient, but Democrats also have seen turnover.

Beyond conference dynamics, most members of this Committee must deal with the reality that fewpolitical benefits come from devoting oneself in the Senate to foreign policy.   On the plus side, our members are invited to appear on Sunday morning talk shows more than most, and service on this Committee, however brief, is sometimes seen as a useful credential when seeking higher office.  But the Foreign Relations Committee is a difficult platform from which to appeal for campaign funds and there is very little public spending that flows through this Committee to constituents.   More to the point, absent a serious global crisis, foreign policy rarely tops the list of concerns of voters.”