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Rep. Pramila Jayapal Becomes First Immigrant Named Ranking Member of Subcommittee on Immigration

Rep. Pramila Jayapal Becomes First Immigrant Named Ranking Member of Subcommittee on Immigration

  • Her Indian American colleagues — Reps. Ami Bera, Raja Krshnamoorthi and Ro Khanna — were also appointed members of three key House panels.

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) has been named ranking member of the powerful House Judiciary Committee’s panel on Immigration, making her the first immigrant to serve in a leadership role for the subcommittee. She succeeds Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren to serve on the Subcommittee on Immigration Integrity, Security, and Enforcement, a press release said. It will be chaired by Tom McClintock (R-Calif.) and has jurisdiction over immigration law and policy, naturalization, border security, refugee admissions, non-border immigration enforcement, and other various issues.

“As the first South Asian woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and one of only two dozen naturalized citizens in Congress, I am honored and humbled to serve as the Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee on Immigration Integrity, Security, and Enforcement,” said Jayapal in a statement. “As the House Judiciary Committee gets to work, it is, unfortunately, becoming clear that the Republican leadership of the committee has no intention of engaging in good faith solutions to reform our immigration laws,” she said. “In the minority, Democrats will have to be an opposition party that stands up to the most extreme ideas of the GOP and protects our values. However, in this role, I also see promise for bipartisan work with a number of more moderate Republicans who themselves understand the need to restore our country as a beacon of hope.”

Her colleagues — Reps. Ami Bera, Raja Krishnamoorthi and Ro Khanna — were also appointed members of three key House panels.

Khanna (D-Calif.) was named a member of the Select Committee on the Strategic Competition between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party. Khanna has been a leading voice on China. He recently authored an op-ed in Foreign Affairs, “outlining the role that China has played in the deindustrialization of America and his vision to reduce the trade imbalance and lower tensions between the two countries through increasing American production,” a media release said. 

In a statement, Khanna said he plans to use his seat on the committee “to bring attention to our trade deficit with China while also working to address the security risk China poses to Taiwan.”

Khanna will be joined on that House Select Committee by Rep. Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.), who was appointed ranking member. “At a time when anti-Asian hate and violence are on the rise, it’s essential that this committee focuses its vital work on protecting all Americans from the threat posed by the CCP, while avoiding dangerous rhetoric that fuels the types of xenophobia that have endangered members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. Chairman Gallagher has repeatedly demonstrated his singular focus on the committee’s critical undertaking of readying the United States for all the challenges posed by the Chinese Communist Party.”

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Krishnamoorthi, who is also a senior member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, is the lead Democrat on the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act (ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act), “which protects Americans by blocking and prohibiting all transactions from any social media company in, or under the influence of, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and several other foreign adversaries,” according to a media release.

Bera (D-Calif.) was selected to serve on the influential House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, which is “charged with providing oversight of the nation’s intelligence activities, including the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI), National Security Agency (NSA), as well as the military intelligence programs.”

He also serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee. During the 117th Congress, Bera served as Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, Central Asia, and Nonproliferation where he spearheaded Congressional efforts “to strengthen ties with our Indo-Pacific allies and partners to advance U.S. economic and security interests,” according to his website.

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