November 4, 2010
Election brings changes to House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure will look a lot different in the next Congress.
Not only will it be controlled by Republicans, but a lot of familiar Democratic faces will be missing - most noticeably Chairman James Oberstar (Minn.) who lost his re-election bid. Other Democrats on the who fell to Republican challengers include Gene Taylor (Miss.),Michael A. Arcuri (N.Y.), John A. Boccieri (Ohio), Christopher P. Carney (Pa.), John J. Hall (N.Y.), Phil Hare (Ill.), Steve Kagen (Wisc.), Betsy Markey (Colo.), Michael E. McMahon (N.Y.), Harry E. Mitchell (Ariz.), Solomon P. Ortiz (Texas), Thomas S.P. Perriello (Va.), Mark H. Schauer (Mich.), Harry Teague (N.M.) and Dina Titus (Nev.). Democrat Brian Baird of Washington did not run. His House seat was won by Republican Jaime Herrera.
The key Transportation subcommittee of interest to MarineLog readers is the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation subcommittee. Rep. Oberstar was a member of the panel by virtue of his chairmanship of the parent committee. Other panel members who lost their reelection fight were its Vice Chairman, Michael McMahon and Gene Taylor and Steve Kagen,
Transportation Committee rank member John Mica (Fla.) won reelection as did Coast Guard subcommittee ranking member Frank LoBiondo (N.J.). While Rep. Mica is widely tipped to take over the Chairmanship of the Committee, Rep. LoBiondo will have enough seniority in the next Congress that he may well set his sights higher than the Coast Guard panel.
Elijah E. Cummings, Md, will presumably now move from the Chair of the Coast Guard panel to the ranking member slot. He leaves a legacy of giving the Coast Guard rather more oversight than some predessors did. It will be interesting to see if this "tough love" approach continues.