House

House GOP picks all-male slate of new committee chairs

Francis Rivera

House Republicans selected a new roster of committee chairmen on Tuesday for the 114th Congress starting in January.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) won the most contested opening this year, a four-way race on Tuesday to become the powerful House Oversight Committee chairman next year, succeeding term-limited chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). 

{mosads}Notably, none of the new House committee chairs are women. Current House Administration Committee Chairwoman Candice Miller (R-Mich.) remains the only female on the roster of panel leaders, which was announced earlier. 

Over the course of the last two days, the House GOP Steering Committee, a panel consisting of elected leadership, top committee chairmen and regional representatives that determines gavel assignments, interviewed candidates and voted on who should win the chairmanships.

The full GOP conference will ratify the new recommendations Wednesday morning, which is expected to easily pass. 

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who currently chairs the House Budget Committee, was long expected to win the gavel of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee over Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas).

Ryan, the GOP’s 2012 vice presidential candidate, will finally achieve what he has said is his dream job. 

Similarly, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) was widely considered to become the next chairman of the House Armed Services Committee despite a late challenge from Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.). The retiring chairman, Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), implicitly endorsed Thornberry, who has served as the panel’s second-ranking Republican for the last four years.

The opening at the top of the House Oversight Committee was easily the most contested race up for grabs. Chaffetz and Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Mike Turner (R-Ohio) and John Mica (R-Fla.) vied for the high-profile gavel. 

All four candidates emphasized throughout their candidacies that they’d try to run the committee differently from Issa’s controversial tenure and work better with Democrats. Two of the candidates, Jordan and Turner, hailed from Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) home state, inserting another wrench into the mix.

Issa became well known for conducting aggressive hearings and clashing with Democrats, particularly during the contempt of Congress proceedings against Attorney General Eric Holder and the investigation of the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

The California Republican went as far as cutting off Oversight Committee Ranking Democrat Elijah Cummings’s (D-Md.) microphone during a March hearing on the IRS.

Issa congratulated the incoming chairman in a statement.

“Congressman Chaffetz is a valued colleague and demonstrated leader who will continue the work of the Oversight Committee in the next Congress. I am looking forward to working with him on the transition and moving my focus to other responsibilities,” Issa said.

Despite wanting to draw a distinction from Issa during his campaign for the chairmanship, Chaffetz thanked the incumbent in a statement.

“The faith placed in me by my colleagues today is a tremendous honor and privilege,” Chaffetz said. “I have great respect for Chairman Darrell Issa and can’t thank him enough for his many years of dedicated service leading the Oversight Committee.”

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) also made select appointments for two House committees. Rep. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.) will lead the Ethics Committee, while Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) will take over the Intelligence Committee. 

Nunes’s selection came over two high-profile competitors: House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-Fla.) and former House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King (R-N.Y.). 

 

Here’s a list of all the new House committee chairmen for the 114th Congress:

Agriculture: Mike Conaway (R-Texas)

Armed Services: Mac Thornberry (R-Texas)

Budget: Tom Price (R-Ga.)

Ethics: Charlie Dent (R-Pa.)

Intelligence: Devin Nunes (R-Calif.)

Natural Resources: Rob Bishop (R-Utah)

Oversight and Government Reform: Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah)

Small Business: Steve Chabot (R-Ohio)

Ways and Means: Paul Ryan (R-Wis.)

 

Tags Boehner Buck McKeon Candice Miller Darrell Issa Eric Holder Jason Chaffetz John Boehner Kevin Brady Mac Thornberry Paul Ryan Randy Forbes Rob Bishop

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