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House GOP Picks All Men for New Committee Chairs

Emily Crockett

Although there are more women in Congress than ever before in history, House Republicans filled every one of their open committee chair spots with men.

House Republicans filled every one of their open committee chair spots with men even though there are more women in Congress than ever before.

All nine of the new committee chairs are men, and all are white except for Devin Nunes (R-CA), who is of Portuguese descent and will chair the Intelligence committee.

Of 21 House committees, only one will be headed by a woman, Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI), who will chair the House Committee on Administration.

The Senate is also likely to only include one female committee chair out of 16, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AL), with the other 15 chairs being white men.

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The party trumpeted the diversity of its incoming class of freshman representatives, which includes Mia Love of Utah, the first Black Republican woman to serve in the House, and Elise Stefanik of New York, who at 30 is the youngest woman ever elected to Congress.

But the more senior party membership is still overwhelmingly white and male, and committee chairs tend to be chosen according to seniority.

Meanwhile, 11 of 20 current Democratic ranking House members are white men, and six are women.

The Republican Party has been trying to promote a more inclusive message since its losses in 2012, when the Republican National Committee’s post-election “autopsy” laid out a plan to reach out to more women and people of color.

But many of those efforts haven’t come off as genuine, as when a women’s outreach panel at this year’s conservative Values Voter Summit asked how to get more men involved.

“With a leadership team that looks like an episode of Mad Men, we can expect House Republicans will continue their assault on women’s health and continue to block economic progress for women on issues like equal pay,” Emily Bittner of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said in a statement.

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