A Republican congressman who had been stripped of a subcommittee chairmanship after voting against his party’s wishes on trade legislation has been reinstated.
Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina said Thursday that he greatly appreciates Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s willingness to reconsider the decision to remove him as chairman of the House oversight committee’s Government Operations subcommittee.
The move last week by Mr. Chaffetz, the Utah Republican who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, was apparently in response to Mr. Meadows taking a procedural vote against trade legislation supported by GOP leadership.
Mr. Meadows said Thursday he will “continue to vote and conduct myself in accordance with my conscience, what my constituents want me to do, and what is best for the country.”
Mr. Chaffetz said that after speaking with Mr. Meadows several times during the week, “I think we both better understand each other.”
“I respect Mark and his approach,” Mr. Chaffetz said. “The discussions and candor have been healthy and productive. Ultimately, I believe we both want to do what is best for the country. Obviously I believe in Mark Meadows or I would not have appointed him to this position in the first place. It is in the best interest of the committee to move forward together. Therefore, I have asked Mark to continue in his role as subcommittee chairman.”
House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said Thursday at his weekly news conference that “like any family, we have little squabbles from time to time.”
“We’re in the middle of one as we speak, and I’m confident that we’ll resolve our differences” and move on, he said.
Asked specifically about the prospect of Mr. Meadows’ getting reinstated, Mr. Boehner deferred to Mr. Chaffetz.
Mr. Boehner had told reporters Wednesday he supported the original decision to remove Mr. Meadows from the post.
“Listen, we have the majority,” Mr. Boehner said. “And when it comes to procedural votes in the House, the majority has to stick together and vote for or against, whatever the case may be, those procedural motions. And I think the chairman made the right decision. I made it clear to the members I supported that decision.”