Sen. Jim DeMint is “very interested” in the Finance Committee slot being vacated by Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.), according to the South Carolina Republican's spokesman.
"Senator DeMint is very interested in serving on the Finance Committee and has requested it every time since he was elected," said his spokesman, Wesley Denton. "This is where entitlement reform will be written to balance the budget, it's where Obamacare will be repealed, and it's where our tax laws will be reformed to ensure that America remains the best place in the world to do business. ... He understands the seat will be filled by the Republican Leader and Senator DeMint will respect his decision."
Conservative groups, including the Club for Growth, have waged campaigns before to get Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to name DeMint to the panel, but so far he’s been passed over.
But DeMint’s chances improved Wednesday after Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), who Republican aides on the Hill expected to get the nod, removed his name from consideration to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest.
Isakson is the ranking Republican on the ethics committee. Ensign cited the panel’s continuing investigation in his decision last week to leave the Senate. His resignation is effective May 3.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.