GOP Poised to Install Ranking Members

Posted December 10, 2008 at 11:58am

House Republicans will meet to ratify Steering Committee recommendations for ranking committee member positions and to review the GOP auto rescue alternative at 3 p.m., according to an announcement sent to Members from the House Republican Conference.

The memo stipulates that the meeting is for lawmakers only.

The decision came as a surprise to some staff, many of whom had been told by leadership over the past few weeks that ranking committee members would not be ratified until January.

The House Republican Steering Committee, the entity charged with selecting the top GOP positions on committees, met for several hours on Wednesday to hear presentations from their colleagues seeking the top slots.

Throughout the morning, members filed in and out of House Minority Leader John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) second floor Capitol office to give their presentations. Reps. Dave Camp (R-Mich.) and Wally Herger (R-Calif.), both of whom are seeking the ranking member position on the powerful Ways and Means Committee, could be seen shaking hands and chatting in the Rayburn Room until Camp was signaled to enter the Steering panel’s meeting.

Reps. Don Young (R-Alaska) and Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) will both present to the committee, but it is unlikely they will be selected to return to their positions as the ranking members of the Natural Resources Committee and the Financial Services Committee, respectively.

Steering is expected to issue votes of no confidence against both Young and Bachus, signaling an end to their respective committee leadership tenures. Young has faced numerous allegations of wrongdoing, while Bachus has come under fire for his mishandling of his ranking position, particularly during House consideration of a $700 billion financial rescue package.