Congresswoman Martha Roby

Representing the 2nd District of Alabama

Roby expected to land spot on powerful House Appropriations Committee

November 25, 2013
Roby in the News

Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, has been offered a coveted spot on the powerful House Appropriations Committee, the panel that determines how the federal government will spend the people’s money.

Yellowhammer originally broke the news on social media over the weekend, but Rep. Roby has since confirmed what sources close to House leadership told us late last week.

“I am being encouraged by my colleagues to accept an assignment on the House Appropriations Committee,” Roby said in the email to Yellowhammer. “This is so important to the Second District because this is the committee that holds the purse strings and controls federal spending, including funding for all military programs.”

Roby will join fellow Alabamian Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Haleyville, on the committee, but it won’t come without some tradeoffs.

Roby told a small group of her close supporters in the second district over the weekend that she would likely have to give up her seats on the Armed Services Committee, the Education and Workforce Committee, and the Agriculture Committee. She believes, however, that the move will be worth it because the Appropriations Committee has jurisdiction over those areas, as well as many others.

“The Appropriations Committee has oversight on the whole range of government activities,” Roby said. “It provides a unique opportunity to fight wasteful spending, hold the line on the budget, and push for the kind of conservative spending priorities that will put us on a sustainable financial path for future generations. Congress is working in a budget-constrained environment for the foreseeable future, and we must make sure every dollar spent is spent wisely. There is no better place to influence that process and to advocate for the people of my district than on the Appropriations Committee. It is an honor to be considered for such a prestigious position, which generally is available only to more senior members.”

Roby’s appointment to the committee comes at a time when both sides of the aisle in D.C. are hoping to return to so-called “regular order.” That means funding the government through appropriations bills rather than “continuing resolutions” — short-term measures that fund the government at previous levels. For the past several years, gridlock in D.C. has left Appropriations Committees in both chambers with little to do. Roby will be well positioned to play a significant role once Congress returns to the traditional appropriations process.

The Republican Steering Committee chaired by House Speaker John Boehner is expected to vote on Roby’s appointment after Thanksgiving.

“For the time being, I remain fully devoted to my current committees, including the House Agriculture Committee, where we are engaged in critical conference negotiations with the Senate on the Farm Bill,” Roby said. “I look forward to continued discussions with my colleagues in the coming weeks.”

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