Rep. Mike McCaul in line for Homeland Security Committee
U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Austin, is expected to be named on Wednesday as chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, a high-profile panel that focuses on preventing terrorism and securing the borders.
The House Republican Steering Committee voted Tuesday to recommend McCaul. The Republican Conference, made up of the majority party’s members, will make the final, procedural vote Wednesday. Assuming all goes as planned, McCaul will replace Rep. Peter King, R-New York.
McCaul currently chairs one of the panel’s subcommittees. His spokesman Mike Rosen said he didn’t know of any immediate implications for Central Texas, but that McCaul is aware of potential terrorist targets in the state, such as petrochemical facilities on the coast and the Port of Houston.
McCaul edged out Rep. Candice Miller, a Republican from Michigan, who had sought to be the first female chair of the powerful committee.
Though Miller won’t get the top position, Republican leaders are “painfully aware” of the gender gap, with women voters favoring President Barack Obama by 11 points and men favoring Republican Mitt Romney by 7 points, said Cal Jillson, a political science professor at Southern Methodist University .
House Speaker John Boehner likely chose McCaul over Miller to ensure that Texas, with the largest Republican delegation in the House, has an proportionate number of chairmanshipsJillson said.
...McCaul is knowledgeable about border security issues. He is a former federal prosecutor He is also listed as one of the wealthiest members of Congress. His District touches on parts of Austin but stretches along Highway 290 to the southeast and covers Brenham and Washington too. I think he has done a good job for the area.