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Rogers Opening Statement at 116th Congress Organizing Meeting

January 30, 2019

Rogers Opening Statement at 116th Congress Organizing Meeting

WASHINGTON — House Homeland Security Committee Ranking Member Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) delivered the following opening statement at today’s organizing meeting for the 116th Congress.

Remarks as prepared for delivery:

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I’d like to congratulate you again on being selected to lead this committee. Both of us have been able to work together in the past and I hope that lets us hit the ground running. I look forward to your bipartisan leadership of this Committee and wish you success.

As you noted in your statement this committee does vital work to oversee and authorize the Department of Homeland Security. I m proud of this committee s bipartisan track record and our shared understanding that the Department faces complex challenges at home and abroad. Last Congress the House passed 110 bipartisan bills from our Committee. That remarkable amount of legislating highlights the need for a comprehensive DHS Authorization bill.

My time on this committee and the Armed Services Committee has taught me that large departments need the regular feedback an annual authorization can provide. I know Members on our side of the dais are ready to dive into a full-scale DHS reauthorization. I hope the first few hearings this year focus on a reauthorization package.

However, I am deeply disappointed that another Rules package has come and gone without any reform to Rule Ten to allow us to meaningfully address the last unfinished recommendation from the 9/11 Commission Report. Former Chairman McCaul and I fiercely lobbied Republican leadership and I believe they are honestly open to change.

Both Republicans and Democrats have good-faith proposals to make the Department better, boost morale, and make our nation safer.

But we know they are doomed to death by referral to a dozen committees. I would also strongly encourage the Senate to engage more fully in DHS oversight and authorization. Too often, good legislation from the House fails to advance in the Senate due to even worse jurisdictional issues than we have.

I understand that the Chairman and I will have a colloquy regarding a memorandum of understanding he is pursuing similar to the one Mr. McCaul secured last Congress. I hope that agreement will remove some of the roadblocks created by our broken House Rules.

I would also like to thank Chairman McCaul. For the last 6 years, he has led this Committee and produced a quantity of work that will be hard to reproduce. We are fortunate to have him continue his service on this Committee and I will always look to Chairman McCaul for advice and guidance in the years to come.


Contact: Nicole Hager