The House GOP Steering Committee elected Rep. Greg Walden (R-Oregon) on Dec. 1 to serve as the next Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce.
Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-New Jersey) has been re-elected as the ranking minority party member on the House committee. Walden and Pallone announced the votes in news releases posted on their websites on Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 respectively.
Walden reportedly beat out Rep. John Shimkus (R-Illinois) for the chairmanship. Walden will succeed Rep. Fred Upton (R-Michigan) as chairman. In the GOP, committee chairs are term-limited.
As the oldest standing legislative committee in the U.S. House, the Energy and Commerce Committee has broad jurisdiction. It has responsibility for the nation’s telecommunications, consumer protection, food and drug safety, public health research, environmental quality, energy policy, and interstate and foreign commerce. Walden is the first Energy and Commerce Chairman from the Pacific Northwest.