Waxman Gains Early Support on House Commerce Committee Chairmanship

Nov 19, 2008  •  Post A Comment

U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., has won a preliminary vote over U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., in their battle to head the House committee that oversees all broadcast, telecom and health legislation.
On the eve of tomorrow’s vote of Democratic House members on who will head the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Rep. Waxman today won the support of the Democratic leadership panel, which will make a recommendation to Democratic representatives.
Rep. Waxman, a Californian who has headed the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, had announced he was taking on Rep. Dingell, the Michigan representative who is the longest-serving member of the House. The two have had past differences on health and some drug issues.
Rep. Waxman has been far more activist than Rep. Dingell. In one example, while Rep. Dingell urged the Food & Drug Administration to be more proactive in reviewing drug advertising on TV, Rep. Waxman proposed legislation to ban direct-to-consumer drug advertising for the first years of a new drug’s existence.
Rep. Waxman also has called for far-reaching bans on advertising for tobacco that ad groups fear could become precedent for attempts to curb TV alcohol advertising.
Rep. Waxman’s selection would further alter the congressional playing field for media companies, where new leadership would set the agenda in both the House and the Senate. In the Senate, U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., is expected to head the Senate Commerce Committee formerly headed by Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii.


  1. It’s time for a new direction and Representative Waxman is correct to be pushing for the Chairmanship.
    Peter Bright

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