Founder of Republican-led Congressional Hispanic Conference to Chair House Intelligence Committee


 

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) will head the House Intelligence Committee in 114th Congress.

Nunes called the Obama Administration’s foreign policy a “complete disaster,” saying that it supports torture, voted repeatedly for surveillance and intelligence gathering without oversight or warrant, and extended the Patriot Act.

As chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Rep. Nunes (R-CA) would have oversight of over 17 military and national intelligence programs, including the CIA and other clandestine activities. When he was a member of the Committee, he traveled extensively to Europe, North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia in 2011-2012.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) made the announcement.

“Today we face a sophisticated and determined terrorist enemy that is intent on killing more and more Americans, not to mention innocents around the globe. We also face rogue states like Iran and North Korea that continue to thumb their noses at the United States. The world is becoming increasingly dangerous and the Intelligence Committee is vital to our efforts to protect the American people, said the House Speaker in a statement.

“Over the past four years, Devin has been instrumental in ensuring that our intelligence professionals have the resources they need to keep America safe. He has asked tough questions and conducted serious oversight to hold the Obama administration accountable. I look forward to working with him as the next chairman of the Intelligence Committee.”

As a member of the Intelligence Committee, Nunes voted to extend the Patriot Act’s roving wiretaps in 2011. Nunes voted against Congressional oversight of the CIA interrogations. He voted in favor of removing the need for a FISA warrant for wiretapping abroad in 2007, and allowing electronic surveillance without a warrant in 2006. That same year, he also voted in favor of continuing intelligence gathering without civil oversight, adopting the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, and voted in favor of approving emergency funding of $78 billion for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2003.

On technology issues, Nunes has voted to protect cyber security by sharing data with government, and in favor of retroactive immunity for telecoms’ warrant-less surveillance.

In an article with American Thinker in 2013, Nunes called the Obama Administration’s foreign policy “a complete disaster.”

And American Thinker quoted Nunes as supportive of torture.

“Congressman Nunes finds it ironic that ‘people complain about harsh interrogation yet are okay with vaporizing people. In reality, they are kind of wimps, because they are not willing to do the hard stuff of capturing and interrogating people to get actionable information. The enemy knows that this administration won’t interrogate them,'” he told American Thinker.

A former U.S.D.A. official under George W. Bush’s administration, Nunes was elected to office in 2002, but first entered politics at the age of 22. His family has roots in Portugal — they are third generation farmers in California. He was listed as one of the “40 Under 40” to watch by Time Magazine in 2010. Nunes told Time the most overlooked issue facing America is “that roughly half the trade deficit comes from buying foreign oil and that this trade imbalance is the result of government policies that prevent us from using our own natural resources.”

In 2003, Nunes became a founding member of the Congressional Hispanic Conference, a caucus of Republican Members of Congress interested in promoting policies of importance to Americans of Hispanic, Latino or Portuguese descent. Priorities have included the Free Trade Agreement of the Americas; tax relief to families and the over two million Hispanic- and Portuguese-owned small businesses; support for faith-based initiatives; and educational choice for all, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Conference should not be confused with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, which is controlled by Democratic congress members.

Florida Rep. Jeff Miller and New York Rep. Pete King were also vying for the intelligence position.
Nunes, a close ally of Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), is also on the Ways and Means Committee. He represents the Central Valley of California.

–Courtesy of Latin Post

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