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Nevada political clout grows in House with new appointment for Lee

Updated December 18, 2020 - 6:44 pm

WASHINGTON — Nevada’s political clout in the House increased Thursday when Rep. Susie Lee of Nevada was placed on the powerful House Appropriations Committee, which controls the purse strings that fund the federal government.

The elevation of Lee, a Democrat, gives Nevada two members on the panel, which also includes Rep. Mark Amodei, R-Nev.

New Democratic committee assignments were announced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who said the selections of lawmakers for committees to the incoming 117th Congress were made on “proven expertise, leadership and commitment to hardworking families.”

Lee, re-elected in November to a second term in a competitive congressional district that includes Henderson and Summerlin, said the nation is facing unprecedented challenges that “require significant resources to address.”

“I want to make sure those resources are put to good use,” she said. “My home state of Nevada has been ravaged by Covid-19.”

Lee also said that she would oppose any future funding to revive the process to develop the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository, north of Las Vegas.

Committee assignments are made by the respective party’s steering and policy panels. Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., a former member of the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee, pushed for Lee to receive the new assignment.

A seat on the Appropriations Committee is a political plum for Lee, who is likely to face Republican opposition in 2022 in a swing district. The party that holds the White House has historically lost House seats in a midterm election.

Lee’s ascension to the spending panel also gives Nevada more political clout.

Rep. Steven Horsford, a Democrat, serves on the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, and Titus serves as a chairwoman of a House Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee and is part of the House Democratic whip organization.

Contact Gary Martin at gmartin@reviewjournal.com or 202-663-7390. Follow @garymartindc on Twitter.

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