Second District Congressman Dan Boren secures seat on House Armed Services Committee

Wednesday, January 5th 2005, 5:37 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Oklahoma's newest representative has secured a seat on the House Armed Services Committee, one of the top goals for the freshman Democrat.

"We must be committed to preserving our state's central role in the defense of America," said U.S. Rep. Dan Boren. "I will work for critical funding to ensure that Oklahoma's installations employ the most modern technology and equipment in the war against terrorism."

Boren's congressional district includes the McAlester Army Ammunition Plant.

Republican Rep. Tom Cole, who now represents the 4th District, announced Tuesday that he has accepted a leadership appointment to the House Rules Committee and will take a leave of absence from the armed services panel.

Cole's move comes as the Pentagon is gearing up for another round of base closings, and Cole has offered assurances that he will continue to track military issues.

Despite a limited military presence in the 2nd District, Boren pushed hard for a seat on the panel.

"As a member of the Armed Services Committee, I will work to make sure our troops have the resources they need to complete their missions safely, keep Oklahoma's military installations open, and see that we keep our country's promises to our veterans," he said.

"I am a strong supporter of Oklahoma's service men and women, and I believe they deserve the best training and equipment available."

Oklahoma Republican Jim Inhofe is a member of the Armed Services Committee on the Senate side.

Rep. Ike Skelton of Missouri, the top Democrat on the House committee, welcomed Boren to the panel.

"The constituents of Oklahoma can rest assured that their national security interests have found a strong new voice in Representative Boren," he said.

Boren and Skelton are distant relatives.

Also Wednesday, Inhofe won unanimous approval from his GOP colleagues for another term as chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee.