U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., Wednesday was officially named chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, which will play a key role in ensuring that critical reforms passed by Congress last year are implemented to improve services and health care delivery for our nation's veterans.
Isakson also was named chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics, becoming the only Senate Republican to chair two committees in the 114th Congress. The Senate Republican Conference will meet Thursday, Jan. 8, 2015, to ratify committee-elected chairs for the 114th Congress.
"I am very proud to be allowed to chair these two Senate committees on which I have served for several years. The work of the Senate VA Committee is so important to our nation and to my state of Georgia. The work of the Ethics Committee is critical to maintaining the integrity of the United States Senate," Isakson said.
Isakson is a veteran himself – having served in the Georgia Air National Guard from 1966-1972 – and has been a member of the Senate VA Committee since he joined the Senate in 2005. Isakson's home state of Georgia is home to more than a dozen military installations representing each branch of the military as well as more than 774,000 veterans.
"We are at a critical moment in history with the VA, and I will be fiercely committed as chairman of the Senate committee to making sure the Department of Veterans Affairs seizes this moment and rises to meet the challenge of implementing these reforms for our nation's veterans," Isakson said. "There's no greater calling for us in Congress than to bring value back to the VA and our veterans. I look forward to leading the charge in the Senate to implement the solutions to the VA's problems and to help instill a system of success and accountability for the future."
Isakson has long been focused on improving the quality and timeliness of care at Department of Veterans Affairs healthcare facilities across the country, and he helped to uncover signs of neglect and mismanagement at the Atlanta VA Medical Center after holding a Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee field hearing there in August 2013.
Isakson has served on the Ethics Committee since 2007 and has been vice chair of the committee since 2009.
"I take my role on the Ethics Committee very seriously and I remain dedicated to upholding the highest ethical standards of the U.S. Senate in a fair, nonpartisan manner," said Isakson.
Isakson will also serve on the following Senate committees in the 114th Congress, which began on Jan. 6, 2015:
· Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (known as HELP)
· Committee on Finance
· Committee on Foreign Relations