114th Congress and Global Health: House Appropriations Committee, State and Foreign Ops, Labor HHS Subcommittees

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The November 2014 election saw Republicans gain the majority in the Senate, putting both houses of Congress under GOP control for the first time since 2006, and giving the party control over hearings and legislative action with leadership of all committees and subcommittees. As the new Senate majority and continuing House majority set the legislative agenda for the coming session, Science Speaks 114th Congress series this week will look at changes to committees pivotal to global health concerns, including new leaders, new faces, and new subcommittees, with newly defined jurisdictions. You can also check out the IDSA Center for Global Health Policy listing of relevant House and Senate committee and subcommittee membership at the link below.

The 114th Congress brings no change to the leadership of the House Appropriations Committee, or its global health- funding State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee. It brings one new leader to its Labor, Health and Human Services Subcommittee, which oversees Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health funding.

Harold RogersRep. Harold Rogers (R-Ky) continues to Chair the House Appropriations Committee as he has since the 112th Congress. A fiscal conservative, he voted for the 2003 act authorizing the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, but against its reauthorization  in 2008.

Rep_Nita_LoweyRep. Nita Lowey (D-NY) – continues to serve as the committee’s Ranking Member. Lowey, who voted for the authorization and reauthorization of PEPFAR, has been vocal in her support for global health programming research and development.

The State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee

With oversight that includes annual funding decisions for PEPFAR, the Global Fund and the USAID TB program, this subcommittee retains leadership with a record of support  — some of it mixed — for global health programming.

Rep. Kay GrangerRep. Kay Granger (R-Tx) – continues to chair this subcommittee, as she has since the 112th Congress. The Congresswoman voted for the 2003 authorization of PEPFAR, and did not cast a vote for the 2008 reauthorization. In January, with Rep. Anders Crenshaw (R-Fl) and Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.) she coauthored a Roll Call opinion piece highlighting positive on-the-ground impacts of foreign aid.

Rep. Nita Lowey (D-NY) continues as Ranking Member of this subcommittee.

Labor, Health, and Human Services Subcommittee

This subcommittee, which oversees annual funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health is led by a returning member, and a continuing Ranking Member.

Rep. Tom Cole hi res photoRep. Tom Cole (R-Ok) replaced Rep. Jack Kingston, (who gave up his seat in a losing bid for a Senate seat) as chairman of the subcommittee he served during the 112th Congress. He voted to authorize PEPFAR in 2003, and for reauthorization in 2008. A Science Magazine profile of the new Chairman cites his background as a history student and quotes him saying “historians have a pretty good sense of what type of research should be pursued. Among the issues listed on his web site, he includes support for science and technology, for foreign aid, and for “life,” under which he notes: “I am committed to protecting the most vulnerable, including the unborn, with every vote I cast.”

rosa_delauro_photoRep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Ct.), Ranking Member of this subcommittee since the 112th Congress, retains the seat. A survivor of ovarian cancer, and a strong supporter of biomedical research, at a 2013 rally in support of medical research funding, she cited the economic returns that research investment brings in jobs and products, in case, she said, “we cannot get the naysayers on the humanity of medical research.” Rep. DeLauro voted for the 2003 authorization, and 2008 reauthorization of PEPFAR.

See the IDSA Center for Global Health Policy Guide to the 114th Congress here.

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