Notable Departures of the 113th Congress

With the midterm elections just over six months away there are a number of notable retirements in Congress. To date nine Senators and 49 Representatives have decided to not run for reelection.

Notable in these retirements are the years of seniority and institutional knowledge leaving both chambers. A number of important Members will be leaving at the end of the 113th Congress.

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA):

Harkin of Iowa will be retiring after five terms in the Senate. He is the current Chairman of the important Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pension (HELP) Committee. This committee is responsible for overseeing the aforementioned including all discretionary health policy –anything that is not Medicare/Medicaid related. He is also an appropriator serving as chair of the Labor, Health and Human Services subcommittee tasked with funding those important agencies and programs. This dual role of authorizing legislation and appropriating the funds for those authorized programs have helped to make him an effective leader in the Senate.

Representative Dave Camp (R-MI):

Camp of Michigan will be retiring after 12 terms in the House. He is the Chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. This Committee has the constitutional privilege of introducing any revenue generating legislation giving the Chairman a significant amount of discretion over federal legislation in both chambers. In addition to taxation and some trade matters the Ways and Means Committee has oversight over all mandatory health policy meaning most matters dealing with Medicare or Medicaid.

Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK):

Dr. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma will be leaving the Senate early, due to a medical condition, having served two years into his second term.  “Dr. No,” as he is sometimes affectionately called, has adopted the role of dogged watchdog of the purse-strings. He has used the many rights and privileges he has as a Senator to demand cuts and request that legislation meet “pay-go” and statutory budget restrictions.

Representative Henry Waxman (D-CA):

Waxman of California will be leaving after serving 20 terms in the House of Representatives across nine Presidential terms. In addition to a wealth of institutional knowledge he is taking with him, he is one of the strongest Democratic voices on climate change. As Chairman of the important Energy and Commerce Committee, Mr. Waxman overseas energy policy as well as health policy from the FDA, to public health programs to Medicaid and some Medicare policy. He was instrumental in helping then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi with crafting and aiding the passage of the Affordable Care Act in the House in late 2009.

Representative George Miller (D-CA):

Miller of California is another important leader who will be leaving at the end of the 113th Congress.  Also from California and having served 20 years like Mr. Waxman, Representative Miller leaves the Chairmanship of the House Education Labor and Workforce Committee. In addition to chairing an important committee he is close friends with Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. The chamber will lose an able member of the leadership.

This entry was posted in 113th Congress, 2014 Elections, House, Outlook, Senate and tagged , , , , , by Jose Woss. Bookmark the permalink.
Jose Woss

About Jose Woss

José Woss is passionate about policy issues and the legislative process. José works closely with the team to research policy and legislative matters to find creative approaches to client needs. He focuses his work primarily on health care issues, global health policy, and foreign relations. He assists clients with scheduling and coordination of Hill days and meetings with Congressional staff. José enjoys monitoring important Congressional and regulatory matters. Additionally, drawing from his personal appreciation for technology and social media, he works to promote the success of both the team and the team’s clients through Twitter. Before joining the District Policy Group, José worked for U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ). As a staff assistant and interim deputy press secretary, he honed his passion for policy and advocacy. José currently lives in Washington, D.C. Previously, José was an advocate in the New York/New Jersey region. He worked directly with underrepresented communities as a social worker in Housing Works’ Brooklyn, NY office and as a case aid/interpreter for West African refugees with the International Institute of New Jersey in Jersey City, NJ. José graduated from Montclair State University with a bachelor’s degree in french translation and international studies. He is currently pursuing a Master of Public Administration at American University. He loves to bike long-distance, and listen to podcasts, including the BBC World Service, political satire and commentary, and NPR.

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