Pelosi taps Virginia Democrat for key post on economic panel

Pelosi taps Virginia Democrat for key post on economic panel
© Greg Nash

House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats offer mixed reactions to Trump's Mideast peace plan James Taylor to perform at awards ceremony for Ruth Bader Ginsburg this week Trump offers two-state peace plan for Israeli-Palestinian conflict amid skepticism MORE (D-Calif.) on Tuesday named Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) to be the vice chairman of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), tapping him to serve as the top Democrat on a panel that includes members from both chambers of Congress.

Beyer is set to succeed Rep. Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn Bosher MaloneyHouse passes bill aimed at bolstering Holocaust education Government privacy watchdog under pressure to recommend facial recognition ban House Oversight committee asks DHS for information on family separation MORE (D-N.Y.), who became chairwoman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee late last year following the death of Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsBaltimore unveils plaques for courthouse to be named after Elijah Cummings GOP leaders encourage retiring lawmakers to give up committee posts Pelosi taps Virginia Democrat for key post on economic panel MORE (D-Md.). 

"As a powerful voice in Congress and on the Joint Economic Committee, Congressman Beyer has fought tirelessly to confront the disparity of income that is undermining the confidence of millions of hard-working Americans," Pelosi said in a news release. "At the helm of the JEC, his skilled leadership and firm values will be essential to bring meaningful progress that strengthens our economy, protects American workers and makes a difference in the lives of the American people."

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Pelosi's recommendation of Beyer for the vice chairman position needs to be confirmed by a vote of the whole committee to take effect.

The JEC is tasked with examining U.S. economic conditions and making recommendations about how to grow the economy. The panel holds hearings annually with the chairmen of the Federal Reserve and the White House Council of Economic Advisers and holds hearings on other economic matters.

The JEC contains members from both the House and the Senate, with the chairman alternating between the two chambers. In the current Congress, the committee's chairman is Sen. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeThe self-fulfilling Iran prophecy No patriotic poll bump for Trump, but Soleimani strike may still help him politically Senators are politicians, not jurors — they should act like it MORE (R-Utah.). In 2021, the chairman of the committee will come from the House and is likely to be Beyer if Democrats maintain their majority in the chamber.

Beyer, who represents Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, also serves on the House Ways and Means Committee and the House Science, Space and Technology Committee. He's a member of both the Congressional Progressive Caucus and the more moderate New Democrat Coalition.

"Stewardship of the U.S. economy is one of the most important challenges facing Congress, and I will approach this responsibility with the gravity it deserves," Beyer said.

He added that he'll draw upon his past experiences in government and business as well as his progressive values "in the fight to address the major economic challenges of our time, including growing inequality, wage stagnation, the climate crisis, and the cost of healthcare."