By Vandana Rambaran
Published November 20, 2019
House Democrats voted Wednesday to elect Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., as the new permanent chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, succeeding Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., who died in late October.
"I am deeply humbled and grateful to my colleagues for entrusting me with the chairmanship," Maloney said in a statement. "I'm honored by this opportunity to do more for the American people and will do my best to follow the honorable example that Chairman Cummings left for us all. There's much work to be done, and I can't wait to get started."
Maloney is the first woman to ever hold the title and served as the acting chair of the influential committee after Cummings died; he was one of several Democrats across three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry against President Trump.
Maloney, who has served in Congress for 14 terms and has been a vocal critic of Trump, previously promised that the impeachment probe would continue uninterrupted in the wake of Cummings' death.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi embraced the caucus' pick and called Maloney a "deeply respected and battle-tested leader."
“Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney has been a force for progress in America for decades," Pelosi said in a statement. "At the helm of the Joint Economic Committee, she has honed a keen understanding of the priorities and needs of the American people, and has worked tirelessly to deliver progress that lifts up families in every corner of America. She brings outstanding legislative experience and knowledge of the workings of the Congress that will strengthen the Oversight Committee’s work at this critical time in our nation’s history."
“We are confident that Congresswoman Maloney’s leadership will help ensure that the Congress can function as our Founders intended, as a co-equal branch acting as a check and balance on the others, and that our Democratic Majority can continue to achieve progress For The People.”
The committee has consistently drawn the ire of Republicans, particularly with its oversight inquiries of the Trump administration’s handling of the census and immigration matters, as well as Trump’s business dealings and security clearances granted to White House officials.
As the previous chair, Cummings, 68, publicly feuded with Trump over the president's comments this past summer about living conditions in his Baltimore district.
Pelosi praised her friend and colleague Wednesday in naming his replacement.
“The Congress and the country were devastated by the loss of Chairman Elijah Cummings, a master of the House who led the Committee on Oversight and Reform with great honor, integrity and principle," she said.
The announcement comes as three House committees spearheading the investigation into Trump -- which is examining whether or not the president committed an impeachable offense by attempting to persuade Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to open an investigation into former vice president and 2020 candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter in exchange for military aid to Ukraine --continue to hold a series of public depositions on Capitol Hill.