HASC names new members, new minority leader
Published: December 17, 2010
WASHINGTON – The House Armed Services Committee will feature a new Democratic leader and three more Iraq war veterans when the new Congress begins next session, according to changes announced Thursday.
Rep. Adam Smith of Washington will replace outgoing HASC chairman Ike Skelton as the top Democrat on the panel, after winning the leadership post in a three-way contest with Reps. Silvestre Reyes and Loretta Sanchez. On Thursday, he promised to “continue to be a strong advocate for our military personnel and their families” and “to provide them with the benefits and support they deserve for their years of faithful service.”
Smith, a seven-term congressman, had served this session as the head of the panel’s Armed Services Air and Land Forces subcommittee.
Meanwhile, Republicans this week added 12 new faces to their majority. They include three of the six new Iraq vets elected to the House in November: Chris Gibson of New York, Tim Griffin of Arkansas, and Allen West of Florida.
The panel already has incumbent Republican members who served overseas in Iraq: Reps. Duncan D. Hunter of California and Mike Coffman of Colorado. Incoming committee chairman Buck McKeon, R-Calif., noted the crucial perspective those recent war veterans, and said that they will be “will be called upon to immediately put their talents to work on behalf of our troops as the committee shifts to a war footing.”
The nine other new Republicans named to the committee are:
Mo Brooks – Alabama
Vicky Hartzler – Missouri
Steve Palazzo – Mississippi
Scott Rigell – Virginia
Martha Roby – Alabama
Jon Runyan – New Jersey
Bobby Schilling – Illinois
Austin Scott – Georgia
Todd Young – Indiana