Earlier today, the Republican House Steering Committee selected Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO) to serve as the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee for the 118th Congress. Jason Smith ultimately defeated fellow Republican Reps. Vern Buchanan (R-FL) and Adrian Smith (R-NE) to replace former committee Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX) after he retired at the end of the last Congress.

 

While Buchanan was an early favorite in the race, Jason Smith ran a remarkably proactive campaign. Despite being only the fourth-most-senior Republican committee member, he was ultimately able to garner support from key members of GOP House leadership. Jason Smith also lacked notable public endorsements, with several other senior GOP committee members, such as Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA), supporting Buchanan.

 

Jason Smith has served on the committee since 2015 and was the ranking member of the House Budget Committee in the 117th Congress. In the 118th Congress, he will be required to vacate his position on the Budget Committee, leaving the Steering Committee to decide another committee leadership position. Like Buchanan, he has extensive private-sector experience and served as majority whip and speaker pro tempore in the Missouri House of Representatives before his election to Congress.

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