The House Armed Services Committee faces significant turnover in the 116th Congress, with a handful of Republican members losing their races in Tuesday’s midterms, and more than a dozen members retiring or seeking higher office. In addition to the leadership change at the top — with the gavel passing from Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) to Adam Smith (D-Wash.) — the Democrats will need to fill several subcommittee chairmanships. One opening is on the Readiness Subcommittee, as Madeleine Bordallo (D-Guam), the panel’s ranking member, lost in August to a primary challenger. The other is on Tactical Air and Land Forces as its ranking member, Niki Tsongas (D-Mass.), is retiring. But other panels could see new Democratic leaders as well if their chairmen opt to take one of the new vacancies.
On the Republican side, one of the subcommittee leadership positions will be open after Mike Coffman (Colo.), chairman of Military Personnel, lost Tuesday to his Democratic challenger. The other panel chairmen are expected to become the ranking members in the new Congress. Two other committee Republicans lost their races Tuesday — Steve Russell (Okla.) and Steve Knight (Calif.).
Turnover on House Armed Services could be even greater, as some remaining members depart for other committees and the Democrats gain additional seats now that they will be in the majority, reports Defense News.
DOD photo by Navy Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Kathryn Holm