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While many Republicans examining election results at the presidential and senatorial levels have become convinced that the party must change in order to win elections in the future, that view is emphatically not shared by their brethren in the House of Representative, especially contingent.  They believe that maintaining control of the House is an affirmation of their views, not a result of skillful redistricting.  This can be seen from yesterday's announcement that 19 out of 19 House Committee Chairmen will be white males.

In the 112th Congress, all but one Committee Chairmen was a white male, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of the Foreign Affairs Committee.  She will not be returning in that role since she has reached the three-term limit.  Paul Ryan of the Budget Committee has also reached the three-term limit, but he has been granted a waiver.  Why not Ros-Lehtinen, who according to Progressive Punch, has a lifetime Progressive Support Score of only 15.52% (9.24% on crucial votes)?  I suspect her support on LGBT issues is a possible explanation.

Several of the new chairmen were not the next in line according to committee seniority; therefore if picking a woman were a consideration, Candace Miller (MI-10) could have been chosen to chair Homeland Security instead of Michael McCaul (TX-10).  Although he has more committee seniority, she has been in the House longer than he has.  She certainly is conservative enough (10.9% lifetime on all issues and 4.79% on crucial votes).

The selection of these 19 new chairmen continues another trend that has existed since before the Republicans took control of the House in 1994:  No one suspected of any degree of moderation need apply.  Tom Petri (WI-6) has been in the House since 1979.  Despite low Progressive Punch scores (11.78% lifetime on all issues and 12.38% on crucial votes), he has never chaired a committee.  Think about it.  Voting the liberal position less than one time in eight disqualifies you from chairing a committee!  Shelley Moore Capito supports the party line on crucial votes 94.06% of the time and the Club for Growth calls her a RINO.  When are the non members of the Tea Party going to wake up and smell the coffee?

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