To update INSIDER’s post-election coverage—Post-Election Blues and Reds—we’ve heard from AHPA (American Herbal Products Association) and UNPA (United Natural Products Alliance) that Dietary Supplement Caucus Co-Chairs Reps. Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) have won the votes for top spots in important House committees.
Pallone beat out Anna Eshoo (D-CA) for the ranking member spot on the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Eshoo was backed by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and won the first round, with a 30-19 by the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. However, Pallone, who was backed by House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD), won the broader Democratic Caucus vote 100-90, securing the ranking member spot.
Pallone, who was the most senior Democrat on the committee, will succeed supplement-critic Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), a known supplement industry foe who is retiring—fellow supplement foe Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) was the only other Democrat ahead of Pallone in seniority, but he is also retiring. In a post-vote tweet, Pallone said he was honored to be chosen and looks forward to working on behalf of the American people.
In a statement congratulating Pallone for the victory, Michael McGuffin, president of the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA), noted, "As the popularity of herbal products continues to grow, it is critical that the industry is well represented on this influential committee."
With the other victory for dietary supplement supporters, Chaffetz will be the new chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, winning a Steering Committee vote over several more senior Republicans. The committee has oversight jurisdiction of federal agencies, including FDA and FTC.
“I am fully committed to taking on difficult tasks that a chairman requires," Chaffetz said, in a statement after the vote. “I look forward to working with new and current Members of the Committee, Ranking Member Cummings, and other leaders in the House as we continue to ensure taxpayers’ investment in government is spent effectively, efficiently and transparently."