Jason Chaffetz Named New House Oversight Chairman

Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz was appointed Tuesday to become the new House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman.

Chaffetz prevailed in a four-way race against Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, Ohio Rep. Mike Turner, and Florida Rep. John Mica, earning the approval of the Republican Steering Committee to become the party’s investigative chief in the 114th Congress.

The Steering Committee met on Capitol Hill Monday afternoon to review the candidacies of Chaffetz, Jordan, Turner, and Mica. The Committee’s voting power is primarily centralized to Republican House leadership, but insiders described the pick as essentially being Speaker John Boehner’s to make.

Chaffetz is seen as being an administration critic that can effectively appeal to the media, which gives him the ability to promote issues with the IRS scandal and Benghazi before President Barack Obama leaves office.

Jordan, the chairman of Oversight’s Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Job Creation and Regulatory Affairs, had the advantage of being term-limited outgoing chairman Rep. Darrell Issa’s favored candidate, but he brought some baggage with him gained from multiple disagreements with party leadership. Turner, meanwhile, seemed to be less interested in investigative oversight work and more focused on “good government” initiatives the committee could spearhead.

Chaffetz will start his new role in January.

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