Washington, DC – The House Armed Services Committee met on Wednesday to officially organize committee operations for the 110 th Congress.

            “As your new Chairman, it is a privilege to welcome our new and returning Members to the House Armed Services Committee.   I look forward to working with each of you in our efforts to develop defense policies that will meet today’s needs as well as tomorrow’s challenges,” said Chairman Ike Skelton (D-MO).        

            “The completion of today’s organizational meeting will allow the House Armed Services Committee to begin an ambitious series of hearings, starting this Thursday, January 11, when we will accept testimony from the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on the situation in Iraq,” said Skelton.  

            “As our agenda moves forward, we will restore the House Armed Services Committee’s historic commitment to robust oversight of the Pentagon and of the Administration’s military policies.   Other priorities include, but are not limited to: taking care of the troops and their families; rebuilding military readiness, particularly for the Army and the Marine Corps; a comprehensive examination of our current policy in Iraq and identifying options for the future; refocusing attention on the war in Afghanistan; and placing greater emphasis on preventing nuclear proliferation,” said Skelton.  

            The organizational meeting allows Members to ratify the Committee rules and the oversight plan for the 110 th Congress.   The Committee rules include the legislative jurisdictions for Subcommittees during the 110 th Congress.   The rules also establish a Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, restoring a panel that was eliminated in 1995.   

            The Committee rules and the oversight plan will be available online at http://democrats-armedservices.house.gov .