Republican Sen. Charles E. Grassley announced he would take over the gavel of the tax-writing Finance Committee in the 116th Congress, a position he held in the early part of 2001 and again from 2003 through 2006.
Grassley’s move also opens up a slot for a new Judiciary panel chairman, likely South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham.
On September 28, as the panel was preparing to vote on Brett M. Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination, Graham warned his Democratic colleagues Friday that he will remember how they handled the contentious episode.
“If I am chairman, next year, I’m going to remember this,” the South Carolina Republican said.
“There’s the process before Kavanaugh and the process after Kavanaugh. If you want to vet the nominee, you can. If you want to delay things until after the election, you cannot. If you try to destroy somebody, you will not get away with it.”
Grassley has two more years under Senate GOP rules to be Finance chairman, where he’ll also have jurisdiction over trade and health care policy. The retirement of Senate Finance Chairman Orrin G. Hatch of Utah opens the door for Grassley to return to the Finance helm.
Grassley’s fellow Finance Republicans still need to formally elect him to the chairmanship in January, and their decision would then be subject to ratification by the full Senate Republican Conference.
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