Sanchez to become top Dem on Armed Services Airland subpanel

The ranking member on the Airland subcommittee was former Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-Texas), who lost in a primary last year.

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Sanchez has seniority on the committee after ranking member Adam Smith (D-Wash.), so she was given the first opportunity to move over to the new panel. But she considered staying at Strategic Forces, which deals with nuclear issues, where some of the biggest debates on the committee have taken place in the past couple of years.

Her Republican counterpart on Strategic Forces last year, Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio), is also moving up with Sanchez and will be chairman of the Airland subcommittee in the 113th Congress.

He replaces former Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.), who lost reelection.

Smith has not yet named the Democratic subcommittee ranking members for the Armed Services panel this year.