NY Rep. Carolyn Maloney replaces late Elijah Cummings as Oversight Committee chair
WASHINGTON — House Democrats on Wednesday chose New York Rep. Carolyn Maloney to fill the shoes of revered Rep. Elijah Cummings as chair of the influential House Oversight and Reform Committee.
Cummings, who died unexpectedly last month, was widely regarded as one of the Democrats’ best spokesmen in challenging the Trump administration.
“I am deeply humbled and grateful to my colleagues for entrusting me with the chairmanship," Maloney said. "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 said.
Maloney’s only competition was Virginia Congressman Gerry Connolly, who appears to have fallen well short in the voting, but was favored by some as a more combative choice to take on the top Republican on the committee, Rep. Jim Jordan. Maloney received 133 votes to Connolly’s 86.
Maloney won praise from fellow New Yorker and Oversight Committee member Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez.
“In a time when a lot of people say progressives and unapologetic Democrats can’t get anything passed, she’s been able to prove the contrary to that,” Ocasio-Cortez told The News, pointing to Maloney’s work on 9/11 legislation. "She moves a lot of things, and people ... tend to not realize exactly how effective she is.”
She called the choice heart-wrenching because Cummings was so beloved. ”There is just no replacement for Elijah,” she said. “But I’m looking forward to seeing Ms. Maloney develop a legacy of her own.”