Despite the fact that many Republicans have gotten behind Trump, some conservatives, such as Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), remain his opponents. Chaffetz opposes Trump largely because he believes in the conspiracy theories desperately spread about him by the left. Fortunately, it looks like he won’t be in Congress much longer.
Chaffetz, the Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, recently announced that he’s resigning from Congress. Apparently, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) is considering taking over his role as Chairman. Given his qualifications, it’s likely he’ll indeed be the next chairman.
Earlier this week, Chaffetz officially announced that he would be resigning as early as June. It looks like Gowdy is going to be his replacement. People close to him say he’s allegedly been putting in quite a bit of thought about running for the position. According to one source, “Rep. Gowdy is talking to members in the conference about the qualities they believe are most important for the next Chairman to possess.”
If Gowdy does end up running, he won’t have much competition. The only other congressmen who’ve said they’re interested are Reps. Dennis Ross (R-FL) and Steve Russell (R-OK), which Scott Wong, a reporter for The Hill, recently confirmed. “TREY GOWDY, DENNIS ROSS & STEVE RUSSELL are all reaching out to STEERING COMMITTEE members about Oversight gavel, sources tell me,” he tweeted.
TREY GOWDY, DENNIS ROSS & STEVE RUSSELL are all reaching out to STEERING COMMITTEE members about Oversight gavel, sources tell me
— Scott Wong (@scottwongDC) May 18, 2017
However, out of the three of them, Gowdy is the clear front-runner. When asked about Chaffetz’s replacement, one Steering Committee member claimed, “if Trey runs, he’ll get it.” This is due to the fact that several members of the Steering Committee, which is the group responsible for choosing the next Chairman, have ties to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), a close ally of Gowdy’s.
Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) was among the first to publicly endorse Gowdy. “[He’s] is the person I want for the job and the person I think will get the job,” Walker told reporters in a recent interview.
Even Ross, Gowdy’s opponent, has come out in support of him. “My first wish is to see that it be Trey Gowdy. Trey is a dear friend. I think he’d be exceptional at it. I think he offers great insight. I think he’s got great experience,” he told reporters, adding, “and if he chooses not to do it then, yes, I would consider offering myself to do that. But we’ll see how it plays out.”
Whoever the Steering Committee ultimately decides, it’s likely that they’ll be better than Chaffetz. This is because as Chairman, he used his authority to pursue the conspiracy theory that President Donald Trump fired James Comey, the former FBI Director, in order to hide the fact that he worked with Russia to win the 2016 election.
Specifically, Chaffetz sent a letter to the Justice Department urging them to appoint an Inspector General (IG). “Today I sent a letter urging IG Horowitz to expand the scope of his review to include the decision to fire Director Comey,” he announced in a statement shortly after making the request, adding, “I look forward to receiving the IG’s findings.”
However, there’s absolutely no reason to look into Trump’s decision to fire Comey. It didn’t obstruct justice and it wasn’t illegal. The FBI’s acting Director made that very clear during a recent Senate hearing. “The work of the men and women of the FBI continues despite any changes in circumstance, any decisions,” he explained, adding, “so there has been no effort to impede our investigation to date. Simply put, you cannot stop the men and women of the FBI from doing the right thing, protecting the American people, and upholding the Constitution.” This proves that Trump did not compromise the FBI’s investigation by firing Comey.
Although some suspect that Chaffetz is leaving office to avoid being caught in a scandal, he insists that it was a “personal decision to return to the private sector” that led him to resign. According to sources close to Chaffetz, his first private sector job will likely be with Fox News. However, giving Chaffetz a platform is risky. He could potentially use it to attack President Trump and spread more conspiracy theories about him. If he wants to be on the air, Fox News should get him to first promise in writing not to spread lies about the president.
Congress needs someone with principles to lead the Oversight Committee. With that in mind, Rep. Gowdy appears to be the best person for the job. President Trump should utilize his incredible negotiating skills to work with the Steering Committee to ensure Gowdy gets the role.