Pelosi slots Lantos, Waxman as chairs

The incoming speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives nominated two Jewish California lawmakers to chair key committees.

The nod from Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) virtually guarantees that Rep. Tom Lantos (D-San Mateo), a staunch defender of Israel, will chair the International Relations Committee, and Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles), who is well known for his outspokenness, will chair the Government Reform Committee when Democrats assume control of the House in January.

They join Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.), the Democratic Caucus chairman and fourth-ranked Democrat in the House. Two Jewish congresswomen, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), are among the nine deputy whips. – jta