GOP doles out top energy, environment assignments

Source: George Cahlink, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, January 16, 2019

House Republicans made official numerous ranking member slots today, assigning new leaders for key energy and environment panels.

Energy and Commerce ranking member Greg Walden (R-Ore.) announced that Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.) will replace retired Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.) as top Republican on the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee.

The panel is expected to be especially active this Congress, with Democrats likely to pursue investigations into policymaking at EPA.

Walden also announced that Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) would be the top Republican on the Energy Subcommittee and Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) would be ranking member on the Environment and Climate Change Subcommittee.

Both veteran lawmakers chaired those subcommittees in the last Congress, although Democrats added climate to the Environment Subcommittee’s name.

Other E&C ranking members will be:

  • Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) on the Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee.
  • Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas) on the Health Subcommittee.
  • Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) on the Communications and Technology Subcommittee.

Walden said Republicans will announce full committee rosters at a later day. The GOP is also expected to name one new member to the Energy and Commerce Committee for the 116th Congress, given retirements.


Republicans today also announced their ranking member lineup for the Appropriations Committee, including a new GOP face atop the panel that controls EPA and Interior Department funding.

Rep. David Joyce (R-Ohio) will be the ranking member on the Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Subcommittee, replacing Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Calif.), who will take the top GOP slot on Defense.

The Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Subcommittee’s top Republican will not change, with Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho, the chairman in the past two Congresses, now serving as ranking member.

Other subcommittee ranking members will be:

  • Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies.
  • Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-Ala.) on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies.
  • Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) on Financial Services and General Government.
  • Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-Tenn.) on Homeland Security.
  • Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies.
  • Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.) on Legislative Branch.
  • Rep. John Carter (R-Texas) on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies.
  • Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs.
  • Rep. Mario Diaz Balart (R-Fla.) on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies.