I serve on four committees in the U.S. Senate. They include:

Judiciary, Ranking Member

The Committee on the Judiciary is responsible for overseeing the nominations process of all federal judges for the circuit and district courts as well as justices nominated to the Supreme Court. Other key areas of responsibility are immigration and naturalization, state and territory boundary lines, and civil liberties. The Committee also oversees all federal courts, including civil and criminal courts. The Judiciary Committee has one of the broadest jurisdictions in the Senate and covers areas ranging from criminal justice to antitrust and intellectual property law.


The Senate Appropriations Committee role is defined by the U.S. Constitution, which requires "appropriations made by law" prior to the expenditure of any money from the Federal treasury. The Committee writes the legislation that allocates federal funds to the numerous government agencies, departments, and organizations on an annual basis.


The Budget Committee is responsible for drafting Congress's annual budget plan and monitoring action on the federal budget. In addition, the Budget Committee has jurisdiction over the operation of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). The budget resolution prepared by the committee each year sets out a broad blueprint for total revenues and spending for the federal government. Authorizing and appropriations committees prepare legislation that enacts specific tax and spending policies.

Environment and Public Works

The Committee on Environment and Public Works is responsible for overseeing legislation on a variety of issues, including our interstate highway system, flood and pollution control, rural and community economic development, relief from natural disasters, protection of the environment, endangered species, fish and wildlife programs, and the regulation of nonmilitary nuclear power.