U.S. Rep. David Schweikert says he won’t get the committee assignment he wanted most, but he is still holding out for an assignment that “has something to do with numbers.”
Schweikert made an appearance, along with U.S. Reps. Ben Quayle and Paul Gosar, at the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s “Welcome to Washington” breakfast today at the Hyatt. The three Republican freshmen said they had moved into their offices in D.C., and are expecting to receive their committee assignments by Friday.
Prime committee assignments will be even more valuable this year, and harder for freshmen to attain, because House leaders have decided to reduce the number of members serving on the committees.
Gosar, who represents the mostly rural 1st Congressional District, used a very unfortunate pun by saying he would be a “natural” choice for a seat on the Natural Resources Committee, though he didn’t sound very optimistic that he’d get it.
By the way, Gosar, a dentist by trade, used a toothbrush as a visual aid during his speech. It was part of an analogy about brushing away the plaque in Washington.
Quayle didn’t say which committees he was lobbying for. He said he plans to stand tall for Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District in whatever capacity is chosen for him, later taking a tone reminiscent of Ringo Starr when he told the crowd that he is just “really happy” to be serving in Congress.
Schweikert, who knocked off Harry Mitchell in Arizona’s 5th Congressional District, said he has been told that he won’t get his first choice of committee assignments: Financial Services. Instead, the former Maricopa County Treasurer said he is still in the running for a different committee where his skills with accounting and statistics would be useful.
Schweikert didn’t get into specifics, but all of his talk about numbers probably means he put in for Ways and Means or the Budget Committee. As a test of boldness, he may have requested a spot on Appropriations, though seats on that committee are extremely valuable commodities and usually off limits to freshmen.
“My gift is creating spreadsheets,” he said after the breakfast event.