House Democrats pick Jamie Raskin to be ranking member on Oversight committee
(CNN) — Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland has won the top Democratic job on the House Oversight Committee after a closed-door election with the Democratic caucus Thursday morning.
Raskin ran against Virginia Rep. Gerry Connolly, besting him in the final vote of 133-75, sources in the room confirmed.
“I was recruited to this Committee by Representative Elijah Cummings on my first day of my first Term and it is overwhelming to think I will now be one of his successors. I am thinking about him a lot today” Raskin, who was first elected in 2016, said in a statement Thursday. “I look forward to championing our Democratic priorities on the House’s lead investigative committee and drawing on the remarkable talents and voices of our Democratic Members.”
The Maryland Democrat has served on the select committee investigating the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol and as the lead manager in the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump.
As the ranking Democrat on the Oversight panel, Raskin will become the chief House defender of the Biden administration when Republicans, who have vowed to investigate the president’s son Hunter Biden and the Biden administration, take over the chamber in the next Congress. Raskin will be in the line of defense against Republicans, who had little ability to enforce their document requests while they were in the minority but will gain subpoena power once in the majority.
Last month, Republican Rep. Jim Comer — the expected next chairman of the Oversight Committee — outlined a broad range of investigative targets focused on President Joe Biden and his family’s business dealings. Comer said that there are plans to subpoena Hunter Biden.
“In the 118th Congress, this committee will evaluate the status of Joe Biden’s relationship with his family’s foreign partners and whether he is a President who is compromised or swayed by foreign dollars and influence,” the Kentucky Republican said. “I want to be clear: This is an investigation of Joe Biden, and that’s where the committee will focus in this next Congress.”
New York Rep. Carolyn Maloney, the current chairwoman of the Oversight panel, is leaving Congress next month after losing a member-versus-member Democratic primary to Rep. Jerry Nadler this year.
“I am confident that Rep. Raskin is the leader the American people need to defend our democracy and champion an effective government at this critical moment in our nation’s history,” Maloney said in a statement Thursday after the vote.