There’s been a lot of jockeying around House committee assignments since the midterms. Republicans are at each other’s throats over who gets to run Energy & Commerce, with Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) the presumptive favorite but considered by many to be “too moderate” since he has let his mask of total, irrational, nihilistic opposition to everything Democrats do slip a couple of times. The hardliners have to choose between flat-earthers Joe Barton (R-Texas) and John Shimkus (R-Ill.) — they must be so proud.
Meanwhile, Dems are moving around as well. It looks like, as of a few minutes ago, Ed Markey (Mass.) has thrown his hat in the ring to be ranking member on the Natural Resources Committee. His office says:
As one of Congress’s leaders on energy and environment issues, Rep. Markey cited as reasons for seeking the position the need to create jobs in the energy sector, especially clean energy, and to fight against possible attacks against bedrock environmental protections for America’s land, water, air and threatened species.
Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.), who was in the ranking spot at Natural Resources, is heading over to the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
Look for Markey to try to rein in likely committee chair Doc Hastings’ (R-Wash.) attacks on Obama’s drilling record and policy, press for further oversight of the oil industry, and defend the EPA from the many attacks heading its way.
Markey used to run the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, of course, but it looks like Republicans are going to disband that committee since they don’t believe the earth is round.