Tea Party-backed freshmen win plum committee assignments

Tea Party-backed freshmen win plum committee assignments

Most of the 22 House Republican freshmen-to-be selected to sit on much coveted, A-list committees won their races with Tea Party backing.

The House Republican Steering Committee last week added the incoming members to the rosters of four powerful committees: Appropriations, Ways and Means, Energy and Commerce and Financial Services.

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House Republicans believe they were swept into power Nov. 2 by a powerful anti-Washington wave of voter frustration over the amount of federal spending and a stagnant job market.

Speaker-designate John BoehnerJohn Andrew Boehner‘Lone wolf’ characterization of mass murderers is the epitome of white privilege Pelosi urges Ryan to create select committee on gun violence Ex-congressman Michael Grimm formally announces bid for old seat MORE (R-Ohio) and his fellow GOP leaders and representatives on the House Steering Committee ensured members of the largest GOP freshmen class in 70 years were given spots on influential panels.

Nearly half of the new GOP spots on the House Appropriations Committee were given to incoming members.

The Steering Committee tapped four Tea Party-backed representatives-elect to serve on the powerful spending panel.

GOP Rep.-elect Alan Nunnelee (Miss.) was one of nearly a dozen candidates officially endorsed by former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin. GOP Reps.-elect Steve WomackSteve WomackGOP budget chair may not finish her term Jockeying begins in race for House Budget gavel Trump reopens fight on internet sales tax MORE (Ark.) and Kevin YoderKevin YoderHow Republicans split on the Harvey aid, fiscal deal House GOP group puts staff in six new districts Progressive group running ads opposing tax cuts for the wealthy MORE (Kan.) were both endorsed by Freedom Works — the interest group closely tied to the Tea Party movement. Rep. Tom GravesTom GravesBillboard ads target Republicans who want to roll back net neutrality Week ahead: House eyes trillion-dollar omnibus | Crunch time for Senate ObamaCare repeal bill | Senate moves ahead on Trump nominees House GOP looks to advance trillion-dollar omnibus MORE (R-Ga.), elected in a special election in June 2010 and who won in the fall's regular election, will also serve on the spending panel and is an outspoken proponent for fiscal restraint.

Republicans pledged they would make significant cuts in spending over the next two years. The GOP Conference for the 112th Congress voted to ban earmark spending last month.

Democrats attacked the Republicans for selecting 15-term GOP Rep. Hal Rogers (Ky.) to head the Appropriations panel last week. Rogers, a longtime champion of earmark spending, recently changed his tune to support the ban on earmark spending.

But the Steering Committee attempted to negate that issue by appointing Rep. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeAuthorizing military force is necessary, but insufficient Republicans jockey for position on immigration McCain, Flake warn against 'politically-motivated penalties' for Canadian defense firm MORE (R-Ariz.), an avid anti-earmark lawmaker who has made every attempt to strip such spending from appropriations bills. Fiscally conservative Republican soon-to-be-sophomore Reps. Steve Austria (Ohio) and Cynthia LummisCynthia LummisFemale lawmakers flee House for higher office, retirement Despite a battle won, 'War on Coal' far from over Dems on offense in gubernatorial races MORE (Wyo.) and centrist Reps. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.) and Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) were also selected to sit on the spending committee.

In a statement Friday, Rogers wrote: “Cutting spending, bringing down record deficits, and reining in out-of-control agencies is going to be a difficult task, but I believe the addition of these fine, talented members is a step in the right direction. Our nation needs serious leadership and I enthusiastically welcome these Members to the Appropriations Committee.”

Only two incoming GOP lawmakers were appointed to the Ways and Means Committee. Reps.-elect Rick Berg (R-N.D.), who defeated veteran Democratic Rep. Earl Pomeroy, and Diane BlackDiane Lynn BlackThe Hill Interview: Budget Chair Black sticks around for now House to vote on budget next week Blackburn says she's interested in Corker's seat MORE (R-Tenn.) were selected to fill two of the 10 new GOP spots created on the tax-writing panel. Four of the new Ways and Means GOP lawmakers picked to sit on the panel were elected in 2008. Reps. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kan.), Chris Lee (R-N.Y.), Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.) and Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) won spots on the committee. GOP Reps. Vern Buchanan (Fla.), Jim GerlachJim GerlachFormer reps: Increase support to Ukraine to deter Russia With Trump and GOP Congress, job creators can go on offense Big names free to lobby in 2016 MORE (Pa.), Adrian Smith (Neb.) and Conference Policy Chairman Tom Price (Ga.) were also selected to serve on the Ways and Means Committee.

Just less than half of the new GOP spots on the Energy and Commerce Committee will go to incoming lawmakers.

GOP Reps.-elect Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerRepublicans jockey for position on immigration Bipartisan bill would toughen North Korea sanctions, require Trump's strategy GOP senators push for delay of ObamaCare insurer tax MORE (Colo.), Morgan GriffithMorgan GriffithIt's time to eliminate the secretive Pharmacy Benefit Manager pricing practices GOP lawmaker: Mexico will pay 'part of the tab' for wall CBO survives two House amendments targeting funding MORE (Va.), Adam Kinzinger (Ill.), David McKinleyDavid McKinleyLawmakers try again on miners’ pension bill There’s a way to protect consumers and keep good call center jobs in the U.S. The myth of OTC hearing aids MORE (W.Va.), Mike Pompeo (Kan.) and Charlie Bass (N.H.) were chosen to sit on the panel that will face a heavy workload in the next Congress as incoming Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) attempts to revamp the new healthcare law and conduct oversight of the EPA.

Bass served in the House from 1995-2007. He won back the seat he held in November.

GOP lawmakers Brian Bilbray (Calif.), Bill Cassidy (La.), Brett GuthrieBrett GuthrieWorking together for patients Rob Thomas: Anti-Trump celebs have become 'white noise' House panel approves bills on juvenile justice, missing children MORE (Ky.), Gregg Harper (Miss.), Conference Vice-Chairwoman  Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (Wash.), Pete Olson (Texas) and GOP Leadership Chairman Greg Walden (Ore.) were also added to the Energy panel.

The House Financial Services Committee, led by incoming Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), will get the largest portion of the incoming freshmen.

Ten of the 12 new GOP spots on the committee went to incoming GOP freshmen: Quico Canseco (Texas), Bob Dold (Ill.), Sean DuffySean DuffyRight worries about Trump move on immigration House Republican 'looking forward to having Kid Rock in Congress’ GOP lawmaker breaks with Trump, says Confederate statues should come down MORE (Wis.), Michael Grimm (N.Y.), Nan Hayworth (N.Y.), Bill Huizenga (Mich.), Robert HurtRobert HurtDemocrat defeats controversial chair of House Wall Street subpanel Republican groups launch final ad blitz in key House battlegrounds Armed protester stands outside Dem's office for 12 hours MORE (Va.), Steve Stivers (Ohio), Steve Pearce (N.M.) and Michael FitzpatrickMichael G. FitzpatrickPelosi: Mexico should not worry about Trump House lawmakers ask for answers on cooked ISIS intel allegations The Republicans who nearly derailed the THUD bill MORE (Pa.) were selected to sit on the panel with jurisdiction over federal monetary policy and the banking system. Pearce and Fitzpatrick served in the House in prior years.

The GOP Steering Committee will meet this week to decide the committee assignments for the rest of the House panels. They have yet to determine the ratio of Republicans to Democrats on the committees.