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Legislative Affairs

January 13, 2023

The House has a Leader, but Committee Rosters are Still Being Finalized

First Floor Votes and 2 New Select Committees formed in the House

This week, the new Republican Majority in the House of Representatives put their first legislation on the House floor, garnering significant Democrat votes in support of the establishment of a new Select Committee on China and more party line votes on issues like abortion. House Republicans also created a new Republican subcommittee on the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the “weaponization of the federal government” which will likely be the hotspot for many of the expected investigative activities into the Biden Administration. President Biden, for his part, tried to get a lead on the expected battle fronts with House Republicans by visiting the Southern Border. President Biden also had to contend with disclosures about classified documents found at his home and other non-government locations.

Here’s what else you may have missed this week:

Nebraska Governor appoints former Gov. Pete Ricketts as Sasse’s replacement. While the Senate is in recess until January 23, there is yet another new face in the chamber. Following the announced resignation of Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska to head the University of Florida, Gov. Jim Pillen announced his choice on Thursday to appoint former Governor Pete Ricketts who will serve for two years before a special election which will be held in 2024. Click here to learn more about his background and views on key issues.

Rep. Katie Porter announces her Senate campaign for Dianne Feinstein’s seat. Despite no announcement by Sen. Feinstein on whether she plans to seek re-election, fellow California colleagues currently serving in the House are already moving to succeed her. Rep. Katie Porter announced the official launch of her campaign for the California Senate on Wednesday, already raising more than a million dollars and securing an endorsement from Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). Rep. Barbara Lee also announced in a meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus her intention to seek this senate seat. Given California’s jungle primary system, it is likely that two Democrats will be nominated and could face-off in a general election in 2024.

McCarthy balks on recommending Rep. George Santos’ removal. This is just the latest chapter in a saga that has been brewing for weeks once it was reported that freshman Rep. Santos (R-NY) had lied about nearly every aspect of his resume and credentials and is also currently being investigated for possible campaign finance violations. McCarthy has now gone on the record to say that despite efforts by Republicans in New York to oust Santos, he will not call for his resignation and says he’ll leave the decision up to the voters in 2024. Santos supported McCarthy’s bid for Speaker and without him in office, the Republican majority would shrink to only 3 members.

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