Royce Tapped to Chair Foreign Affairs Committee
U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-CA) was selected today by the Republican Steering Committee to chair the Committee on Foreign Affairs in the 113th Congress. Royce will succeed Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who was term limited. The decision of the Steering Committee, a group of Republican leaders chaired by Speaker John Boehner, is expected to be ratified by the full Republican Conference on Wednesday.
"After years of sacrifice, Americans are weary of engagement. But while we can't step away from the many challenges abroad, I'll be working to see that U.S. policy is smart and focused, and that we make the best use of our limited resources."
"Right now, the gravest threat facing the U.S. and our allies is Iran. We should be pressuring Tehran as hard as we can to stop its march to nuclear weapons. Checking nuclear proliferation worldwide will be a key Committee priority," said Royce, who served as a conferee to the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010, and has been a leader in advancing U.S.-Israel relations.
The Committee on Foreign Affairs has jurisdiction over the activities of the State Department, including embassy security. In his presentation to the Steering Committee, Royce pledged to exercise tough but fair oversight of the Obama Administration.
"The story of Benghazi is only just beginning to be recorded. The Committee will do its job to ensure there is a full accounting of all that happened within the Administration. Al-Qaeda and its affiliates have their sights on our diplomatic posts world-wide. This is a key national security issue.
"There aren't easy answers. But it only gets harder when the Administration is evasive with Congress and the American people."
Royce has focused on economic issues during his time on the Committee.
"We are only as strong abroad as we are at home. The Committee will focus on expanding economic opportunities for Americans overseas. That includes reforming our too bureaucratic export control system."
In the weeks leading to the Steering Committee vote, Royce won the endorsement of a large majority of Committee Republican members returning to Congress, including Chairman Ros Lehtinen.
"I was honored to have the support of so many colleagues on the Committee. I look forward to proving their confidence in me, working with them and all members of the Committee to defend America abroad."
Royce has served on the Committee since entering Congress in 1993. Royce has served as chairman or ranking member of the Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade Subcommittee for the past eight years. Royce chaired the Africa Subcommittee for eight years, and has been active on the Asia and the Pacific Subcommittee.