WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho) was elected ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for the 117th Congress today. Risch previously served as chairman of the committee during the 116th Congress.
“I am glad to once again have the confidence of my colleagues to serve as the Republican leader of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,” said Risch. “During the 116th Congress, I made it a priority to work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle, as well as allies and partners, to further our shared goals of freedom, democracy, and the rule of law across the globe. We made significant progress in countering an increasingly confrontational China through both legislative action and the strengthening of alliances; defending NATO by penalizing Turkey for its purchase of the S-400 missile defense system as it pursues a closer relationship with Russia; protecting the integrity of our allies’ security with the enactment of further sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline; and holding accountable human rights abusers in China, Syria, Venezuela, and Cameroon, to name a few, through sanctions and other legislation. As we begin a new Congress and welcome two new Republican members to the committee, Senators Rounds and Hagerty, I look forward to building upon this momentum to continue combatting malign Chinese influence, preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, and improving our global pandemic preparedness.”
The committee has been joined by two new Republican members in the 117th Congress, Senators Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.). Remaining on the committee are Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), and Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
Established in 1816 as one of the original standing committees of the Senate, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has jurisdiction over legislation concerning the conduct of U.S. foreign policy, including foreign assistance, treaties, and declarations of war. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee also is responsible for oversight of the U.S. State Department and review of executive branch nominations that carry out U.S. diplomacy, including secretary of state and U.S. ambassadorships.