Miller steps down as Dem policy committee’s chair

Rep. George Miller is stepping down from his decade-long chairmanship of the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee, a post in which he was a top advisor to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

Miller, D-Martinez, said in a news release Tuesday that it’s been an honor to serve under Pelosi’s direction, and before that under Democratic Leader Dick Gephardt. “I thank the leader for her confidence in me and I look forward to working with Steering and Policy as a member of the committee in the 113th Congress.”

Pelosi, D-San Francisco, said Miller “has been an extraordinary, dedicated, valued member of our Democratic leadership team, and we will continue to rely on his counsel, energy, and wisdom as we work together to move our country forward in the next Congress.”

Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., and Rep. Rob Andrews, D-N.J., will co-chair the panel in the new Congress.

“The leaders and members of the Steering Committee reflect the diversity, energy, bold ideas, and creative thinking of all House Democrats, and embody our Democratic commitment to create jobs, strengthen the middle class, and grow the economy,” Pelosi said in her release. “With Congresswoman DeLauro and Congressman Andrews at the helm, this committee will play a central role in addressing the challenges facing our families, small businesses, and communities nationwide.”

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, is among the regionally elected members of the committee – representing Northern California, Hawaii and Alaska plus American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands – while Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Mateo, joins Miller among the appointed members.

UPDATE @ 3:06 P.M.: Miller says he now wants to turn his full attention “to working with the chair and members of the Education and Workforce Committee on the growing backlog of legislation near and dear to my heart and that are critical to growing our economy – for example, the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the Higher Education Act, the Workforce Investment Act, raising the minimum wage, and protecting miners’ safety and health. The American people are counting on Congress to work in a bi-partisan manner to move these policies forward.”

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.