WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - A shift in the House intelligence committee. With former Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS) taking the reigns at the CIA, Congressman Will Hurd (R-TX) is Speaker Paul Ryan’s choice to succeed him on the committee.
Congressman Hurd (R-TX) says it is important to check politics at the door when acting on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.
"This is my background," said Hurd. "This is my expertise. This is my passion."
After Nearly a decade working in the clandestine service, Hurd is now being rewarded for his experience.
"Being able to understand how the infrastructure operates, how people work in the CIA and the NSA, that allows me to make sure we have the right priorities," said Hurd.
Hurd says he ran for Congress so he could one day sit on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He says the departure of Pompeo to head the CIA creates a different dynamic for the committee.
"The CIA doesn’t create policy," said Hurd. "They collect information to inform policy makers and it’s going to be important for a policy maker like Mike Pompeo, and he knows he’s going into a very different role."
A main function of the committee is to provide oversight, something Hurd says will be easy. Members of House Intel say they check politics at the door when dealing with matters of national intelligence.
"They don’t pick hotheads for this committee," said David Hawkings, a Senior Editor at CQ Roll Call. "They don’t pick people who they feel are going to talk first and ask the right questions later."
Hawkings says Hurd’s experience and ability to stay on message make him a good fit for the committee. Hawkings says Pompeo being a committee veteran won’t have an effect on keeping the agency accountable.
"If Mr. Pompeo stays running the CIA for very long, after one election dozens of the people that he dealt with in Congress will have been replaced so he won’t have all that many relationships to rely on for all that long," said Hawkings.
Hurd says the committee has its hands full as the new Congress rolls on.