Full House T&I Membership Named for 116th Congress

January 17, 2018

Yesterday, House leaders of both parties named the full complement of members of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for the 116th Congress.

The panel has grown – it had 60 members in the 115th Congress (33 Republicans and 27 Democrats) and will now have 67 members in the 116th Congress (37 Democrats and 30 Republicans). (This is still short of the 75 members the panel had in the latter half of the 1990s under chairman Bud Shuster (R-PA).)

Democrats. The 10-seat growth on the Democratic side of the roster was supplemented by three members from the 115th not returning to Congress this year (Capuano (MA), Nolan (MN) and Esty (CT)) and another three members leaving T&I to take seats on the coveted Appropriations Committee (Frankel (FL), Bustos (IL) and Lawrence (MI)). A total of 16 new Democrats were named to the panel.

Four were had at least one term of House service already: Stephen Lynch (MA) has been in the House for 17 years, and Salud Carbajal (CA), Anthony Brown (MD) and Adriano Espaillat (NY) have now begun their second House term. (Lynch’s lateral move to T&I after all this time is, no doubt, to make up for the massive loss of Bay State seniority on T&I due to the defeat of Mike Capuano in his primary last year.)

The other dozen are freshmen, and nine of the twelve knocked off Republican incumbents last November, so their appointment to T&I is an indicator that the Democratic leadership wants to do as much as possible to let them keep those seats in 2020. The dozen Democratic freshmen, in order of seniority, are:

  • Tom Malinowski (NJ-7), who defeated Leonard Lance (R).
  • Greg Stanton (AZ-9), who succeeded Krysten Sinema (D).
  • Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (FL-26), who defeated Carlos Curbelo (R).
  • Lizzie Fletcher (TX-7), who defeated John Abney Culberson (R).
  • Colin Allred (TX-32), who defeated Pete Sessions (R).
  • Sharice Davids (KS-3), who defeated Kevin Yoder (R).
  • Abby Finkenauer (IA-1), who defeated Rod Blum (R).
  • Jesús “Chuy” García (IL-4), who succeeded Luis Gutiérrez (D).
  • Antonio Delgado (NY-19), who defeated John Faso (R).
  • Chris Pappas (NH-1), who succeeded Carol Shea-Porter (D).
  • Angie Craig (MN-2), who defeated Jason Lewis (R), who was also on T&I.
  • Harley Rouda (CA-48), who defeated Dana Rohrabacher (R).

Republicans. The GOP saw its total seats reduced by three (from 33 to 30) but lost eleven members from last year – three to retirement, two to failed Senate bids, five to election losses, and one to a promotion to the exclusive Ways and Means Committee. The seniority order of returning members stayed the same except that John Katko (R-NY) plummeted down the list, an indication that he used most of his mojo with the leadership elsewhere.

This left eight Republican vacancies, which went to:

  • Jenniffer González-Colón (PR-AL), who is in the middle of her first four-year term as Resident Commissioner from the hurricane-ravaged commonwealth.
  • Ross Spano (FL-15), who succeeded Dennis Ross (R).
  • Pete Stauber (MN-08), who succeeded retiring Rick Nolan (D) in what is the old Jim Oberstar (D) district up in the Iron Range.
  • Carol Miller (WV-03), who succeeded the retired Evan Jenkins (R) in what is the old Nick Rahall (D) district.
  • Troy Balderson (OH-12), who succeeded Pat Tiberi (R) last year in a special election.
  • Gary Palmer (AL-06), now in his fourth term.
  • Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01), who won this swing district in Bucks County last year after the big court-ordered remapping.
  • Greg Pence (IN-06), the older brother of Vice President Mike Pence, replacing my old friend Luke Messer (R) who left the House to run for Senate but who started off on Capitol Hill years ago as an intern for Jimmy Duncan (R-TN).

Subcommittee ranking members. Today, new T&I ranking member Sam Graves (R-MO) announced the ranking minority members of the T&I subcommittees for the 116th Congress. Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR) has not yet announced the Democratic subcommittee chairmen, but the fact that Graves made his announcement means that DeFazio has told him that the subcommittee names and jurisdictions won’t change from the 116th Congress.

The six subcommittee ranking members are all new. Three of last year’s six subcommittee chairmen left the House. Graves himself is ineligible to be ranking on a subcommittee because he is now ranking on the full committee. And Brian Mast (R-FL) was only acting chairman of the Coast Guard subcommittee last year because of the ignominious ejection of Duncan Hunter (R-CA) from T&I.

Highways and Transit goes to Rodney Davis (R-IL), Aviation goes to Garrett Graves (R-LA) who moved over from Water, which now goes to Bruce Westerman (R-AR). Railroads goes to another Arkansasn, Rick Crawford (R-AR). Coast Guard goes to Bob Gibbs (R-OH), who once chaired the Water subcommittee. And Freedom Caucus bomb-thrower Mark Meadows (R-NC) gets the Economic Development ranking job after his colleagues rejected his bid to be ranking member on the Judiciary Committee.

Subcommittee 115th top D 116th top D 115th top R 116th top R
Aviation Larsen (WA) ?????? LoBiondo (NJ) Graves (LA)
Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Garamendi (CA) ?????? Mast (FL) Gibbs (OH)
Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management Titus (CA) ?????? Barletta (PA) Meadows (NC)
Highways and Transit Norton (DC) ?????? Graves (MO) Davis (IL)
Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Capuano (MA) ?????? Denham (CA) Crawford (AR)
Water Resources and Environment Napolitano (CA) ?????? Graves (LA) Westerman

On the Democratic side, we don’t know chairmen yet, but it is considered highly unlikely that Norton will give up Highways and Transit or that Larsen will give up Aviation. Assuming that chairman DeFazio continues the strong seniority-based Democratic norm, Grace Napolitano (D-CA) will have first choice of keeping Water or else taking over Railroads. If she keeps Water, then Dan Lipinski (D-IL) would certainly want Railroads.

The full T&I member list, including members departed from the 115th, is below.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, 115th Congress to 116th Congress

115th members who departed in strikethrough type, new members for the 116th Congress are in italic type.
Democrats (27 in 115th, 37 in 116th) Republicans (33 in 115th, 30 in 116th)
1 DeFazio (OR) 1 Graves (MO)
2 Norton (DC) 2 Young (AK)
3 Johnson (TX) Duncan (TN) Retired
4 Cummings (MD) LoBiondo (NJ) Retired
5 Larsen (WA) Shuster (PA) Retired
Capuano (MA) Lost in Primary 3 Crawford (AR)
6 Napolitano (CA) Barletta (PA) Ran for Senate
7 Lipinski (IL) 4 Gibbs (OH)
8 Cohen (TN) 5 Webster (FL)
9 Sires (NJ) Denham (CA) Lost in General
10 Garamendi (CA) 6 Massie (KY)
11 Johnson (GA) 7 Meadows (NC)
12 Carson (IN) 8 Perry (PA)
Nolan (MN) Retired 9 Davis (IL)
13 Titus (NV) Sanford (SC) Lost in Primary
14 Maloney (NY) 10 Woodall (GA)
Esty (CT) Retired Rokita (IN) Ran for Senate
Frankel (FL) To Appropriations 11 Babin (TX)
Bustos (IL) To Appropriations 12 Graves (LA)
15 Huffman (CA) Comstock (VA) Lost in General
16 Brownley (CA) 13 Rouzer (NC)
17 Wilson (FL) 14 Bost (IL)
18 Payne (NJ) 15 Weber (TX)
19 Lowenthal (CA) 16 LaMalfa (CA)
Lawrence (MI) To Appropriations 17 Westerman (AR)
20 DeSaulnier (CA) 18 Smucker (PA)
21 Plaskett (VI) 19 Mitchell (PA)
22 Lynch (MA) Faso (NY) Lost in General
23 Carbajal (CA) 20 Katko (NY)
24 Brown (MD) Ferguson (GA) To Ways and Means
25 Espaillat (NY) 21 Mast (FL)
26 Malinowski (NJ) Lewis (MN) Lost in General
27 Stanton (AZ) 22 Gallagher (WI)
28 Mucarsel-Powell (FL) 23 Gonzalez-Colon (PR)
29 Fletcher (TX) 24 Spano (FL)
30 Allred (TX) 25 Stauger (MN)
31 Davids (KS) 26 Miller (WV)
32 Finkenauer (IA) 27 Balderson (OH)
33 Garcia (IL) 28 Palmer (AL)
34 Delgado (NY) 29 Fitzpatrick (PA)
35 Pappas (NH) 30 Pence (IN)
36 Craig (MN)
37 Rouda (CA)

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