Last night the House Democratic Caucus selected Congressman Adam Smith (WA-9) as ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee. Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (CA-47) and Silvestre Reyes of TexasÂ had challenged Smith for the leadership position.
SanchezÂ and Smith tied in the first round of voting, 64-64, with Reyes receiving 53 votes. Reyes was dropped going into the second round of votes, which Loretta narrowly lost to Smith â€“ 86-97. Major news media gave Sanchez little chance at defeating Smith. Her showing was however quite significant.
Rep. Sanchez beat the most senior Democrat on the Committee twice (once in Steering & Policy, once in the full Caucus) and was almost able to win a Ranking Member position that has never before gone to a woman.
Today Congresswoman Sanchez issued the following statement of congratulations upon the election of Congressman Adam Smith:
â€œI want to congratulate Congressman Smith on his hard-fought victory and look forward to continuing to work with him on the issues that are important to our troops, veterans, and military families. The values of our Democratic Caucus must be heard loudly in the new Congress and I will be working hard â€“ with all of my colleagues â€“ to make certain that happens.â€