State officials keep busy with new assignments in Washington

West Tennessee's two congressional representatives will have busier committee loads in the 110th Congress, according to their offices.

Posted on January 16, 2007

It was announced Friday that Rep. John Tanner, D-Union City, has been named to the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and the 8th District representative also will keep his spot on the powerful Ways & Means Committee. Tanner also has been promoted to chairman of the United States delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly by new Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The delegation, a bipartisan group of members of Congress, meets regularly with its counterparts from the other 26 NATO members to discuss security, economics and ongoing NATO operations. The assembly next meets in Brussels, Belgium, Feb. 18-20. "I will be honored to lead our delegation to an organization that is critically important as we continue building our nation's diplomatic relationships on both sides of the Atlantic," Tanner said. "The NATO alliance is as important now as it ever has been because of the challenges facing us all as civilized nations." Meanwhile, 7th District Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Franklin, has assignments to the Homeland Security and Financial Services committees, and she expects to keep her seat on the House Energy & Commerce panel. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Maryville, has picked up a seat on the Senate Appropriations Committee, the first Tennessee Republican to sit on that committee. He also will be on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), Environment and Public Works (EPW) and Rules and Administration committees. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Chattanooga, was assigned to the committees on Energy, Foreign Relations, Aging and Small Business. The 110th Congress convened last week. Tanner is beginning his 10th term in the House. Blackburn was elected to a third term in November, while Corker was the only freshman Republican to win in the mid-term elections. Alexander is in the final two years of his first term in the Senate, and is expected to run for re-election in 2008.