Silvestre Reyes Next House Intelligence Chairman
Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi has ended the most heated fight over a House* committee chairmanship in can recall, tapping Texan Silvestre Reyes as the next House Intelligence Committee Chair. In stark contrast to Jane Harmon and Alcee Hastings, he’s non-controversial. He also brings an interesting (in a not having been impeached sort of way) background:
Reyes is a Purple Heart winner who was drafted into the Army and served during 1966-68 as a helicopter crew chief and gunner. His service included 13 months in Vietnam. He rose through the ranks during 26 years of service in the Border Patrol, leaving as a senior law enforcement official in Texas in 1995. He won his seat in Congress the next year.
While Bruce McQuain and others have a point about Pelosi’s seemingly hamhanded start to her new job, she’s made a smart choice here. Hastings, especially, would have been a never-ending PR nightmare.
*The fight over on the Senate side over whether to allow Arlen Specter to become Judiciary Committee chair was arguably even more bitter.