On January 18, 2019, the House Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member Rep. Greg Walden (R-Oregon), announced the Republican roster for all subcommittees in the 116th Congress.
The Subcommittee on Communications and Technology will be led by Rep. Bob Latta (Ohio) and will include: Reps. John Shimkus (Illinois), Steve Scalise (Louisiana), Pete Olson (Texas), Adam Kinzinger (Illinois), Gus Bilirakis (Florida), Bill Johnson (Ohio), Billy Long (Missouri), Bill Flores (Texas), Susan Brooks (Indiana), Tim Walberg (Michigan), and Greg Gianforte (Montana).
Tim Walberg and Greg Gianforte are the only two new members of this subcommittee. Gianforte, who will also serve on the Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection subcommittee, is a software entrepreneur and a tech-savvy businessman. He co-founded a company (developer of management software for the banking industry), which was later sold to McAfee in the mid-1990’s. In 1997, Gianforte and his wife founded RightNow Technologies (software service), which was acquired by Oracle Corp. in 2011.
The Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection Subcommittee will be led by ranking member Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Washington), and include: Reps. Fred Upton (Michigan), Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (Texas), Bob Latta (Ohio), Brett Guthrie (Kentucky), Larry Bucshon (Indiana), Richard Hudson (North Carolina), Buddy Carter (Georgia), and Greg Gianforte (Montana).
House Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member Greg Walden has expressed hope for some bipartisanship. “Our Republican members are ready and willing to work with our Democratic colleagues to promote policies that grow our economy, put consumers first, and bring commonsense solutions to the issues facing our nation,” said Walden, but considering the extent to which extreme partisanship has dominated our politics recently, how much they will actually achieve remains to be seen.