DAILY JOURNAL: OUR OPINION: State’s senatorial influence notches up

The U.S. Congress convened for a new term last week, and many things will change inside the Capitol within the committee process, where Republicans now have majorities in both chambers.

The Senate’s transition from Democratic to Republican control played in Mississippi’s favor as influence is historically measured in Congress.

Our senior senator, Thad Cochran of Oxford, is among the most powerful in the chamber, and he will head the Appropriations Committee for the second time in a Washington career that spans 43 years, including U.S. House service from 1972 to 1978. That post has no committee equal inside Congress.

Sen. Roger Wicker of Tupelo will chair the Seapower Sub-Committee, which historically has strong economic impact for our state because of the U.S. Navy’s presence on the Gulf Coast, and the contracts awarded Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, a major builder of warships and our state’s largest employer.

In broader terms, the publication Roll Call ranks Mississippi’s “clout” index 15th among all the states, making us disproportionately powerful in relation to population and the size of the total delegation (only six).

Daily Journal
1/11/15