Republican Panel Picks Gowdy to Chair House Oversight Committee

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., is set to take over leadership of the panel. Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., is set to take over leadership of the panel. Alex Brandon/AP

The House Republican Steering Committee announced Thursday that it will recommend that Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., be named chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee after Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, resigns at the end of June.

If confirmed by the full Republican House conference, Gowdy would be responsible for oversight of the Trump administration and federal agencies and would determine the committee’s ongoing role in investigating Trump’s firing of former FBI Director James Comey.

Gowdy previously served as chairman of the House select committee on the Benghazi attacks in Libya in 2012, and he was a member of Trump’s presidential transition team. Gowdy won the steering committee’s support over Rep. Steve Russell, R-Okla., who also vied for the job.

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In a statement, Gowdy thanked his colleagues for their support.

“Oversight is constitutionally authorized and important to ensure branch integrity and equilibrium, which is, in part, why other standing committees have subcommittees dedicated to providing oversight and all other standing committees have oversight responsibilities,” Gowdy said. “[I] look forward to working alongside the other committee members, as well as any member of Congress, as we discharge the jurisdiction assigned to us.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a statement that he believes Gowdy will do “an outstanding job.”

“Trey Gowdy possesses the experience and deep commitment to transparency and accountability necessary to be the House’s next Oversight chairman,” Ryan said. “He has proven that he will always look out for taxpayers and seek answers from the bureaucracy.”

Chaffetz surprised many last month when he announced that he would resign from Congress to pursue opportunities in the private sector. Chaffetz described Gowdy as “the right person for the job.”

“He has a long history of demanding accountability, upholding transparency, and relentlessly pursuing the truth,” Chaffetz said. “Under his capable leadership, the committee will continue to work towards ensuring effectiveness and efficiency throughout the federal government. As his friend and colleague, I have every confidence in his abilities moving forward.”

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