Monday, July 15, 2013

Arizona Rep. Grijalva Making Final Push For Key Spot On Natural Resources Committee Before Wednesday Meeting; READ NEW Letter From Conservation Biologists

Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-CD3) is making a final push to convince key House Democrats to select him as the Ranking Member for the influential Natural Resources Committee.  52 key House Democrats - including many in leadership - will vote this Wednesday as to whether Grijalva or Oregon Democrat Rep. Peter DeFazio should get the spot that officially opened today when Rep.-turned-Sen. Edward Markey submitted his House resignation.* (He won a Massachusetts special election last month to replace John Kerry, who became Secretary of State.)

Four key conservation biologists sent a letter today (posted below the jump) to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, expressing their concern about DeFazio's proposed legislation opening up more Oregon lands to logging, and supporting Grijalva's record on environmental issues.

Last week, Grijalva acknowledged that his bid faces an uphill battle, and that he hopes to be able to get enough support in Wednesday's meeting to prompt the Steering and Policy Committee ("SPC") to refer the decision to a Thursday (12:00pm Arizona Time) meeting of the entire Democratic caucus.  He needs at least 14 votes for that to happen.  Among the 52 members of the SPC are close colleagues Ed Pastor (D-CD7) and Keith Ellison (D-MN, co-chair with Grijalva of the Progressive Caucus).

* The 52-member Steering and Policy Committee could also refer the decision to the entire Democratic Caucus.

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