Rep. Darrell Issa is aiming to launch investigations on everything from WikiLeaks to Fannie Mae to corruption in Afghanistan in the first few months of what promises to be a high-profile chairmanship of the top oversight committee in Congress.
According to an outline of hearing topics obtained by POLITICO, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is also planning to investigate how regulation affects job creation, the roles of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the foreclosure crisis, recalls at the Food and Drug Administration and the failure of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission to agree on the causes of the market meltdown.
The sweeping and specific hearing agenda shows that Issa plans to cut a wide swath as chairman, latching onto hot-button issues that could make his committee the center of attention in the opening months of the 112th Congress. By grabbing such a wide portfolio — especially in national security matters — Issa is also laying down a marker of sorts, which could cement his panel as the go-to place for investigations.
An order for hearings has not been set and witnesses have not yet been notified. The committee staff is still moving offices, and subcommittees are currently being organized. Hearings aren’t likely to begin until late January or early February.
Issa’s broad portfolio of investigations — some of which could target the Obama administration — harks back to the days of Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), who squared off against the Bush administration, and Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.), who picked fights with former President Bill Clinton’s White House.
Read More: By JAKE SHERMAN, Politico