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Republican House Finance Subcommittees Are Swamped With Diversity, Equity And Inclusion

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  • The Financial Services Committee disbanded its Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion, however a recent overview of its six subcommittees for the 118th Congress showed that diversity, equity and inclusion were listed as responsibilities.
  • Each subcommittee described an intent to identify policy to strengthen DEI in their prospective areas of interest.
  • “We have serious problems in this country. It is, at best, unserious and at worst very, very worrisome,” Mike Gonzalez, Angeles T. Arredondo E Pluribus Unum Senior Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Multiple Financial Services subcommittees will continue a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) even as Republican lawmakers assume leadership roles.

Republican North Carolina Rep. Patrick McHenry, chairman of the Financial Services Committee, announced six subcommittees and their Republican chairs on Jan. 12, according to a press release. The Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion, which existed during the 117th Congress, was not listed as an active committee, however DEI was repeatedly referenced in each subcommittee description.

“McHenry is a lot better than Maxine Waters, obviously. He did the right thing by getting rid of the subcommittee on DEI but making [DEI] an emphasis on every subcommittee is not a serious thing,” Mike Gonzalez, Angeles T. Arredondo E Pluribus Unum Senior Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “We have serious problems in this country. It is, at best, unserious and at worst very, very worrisome.”

Each subcommittee detailed a commitment to advancing DEI as one of its goals for the 118th Congress, mainly through identifying and strengthening policies. The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, led by Republican Mississippi Rep. Bill Huizenga and oversees all agencies, departments and programming under the FSC’s purview, specifically stated that it would ensure every entity maintained a commitment to “diversity and inclusion policies and best practices.”

While the subcommittee descriptions placed an emphasis on DEI, McHenry told the DCNF that lawmakers would “refocus” on issues important to Americans.

“For four years, Democrats wasted the valuable and limited time and resources of our committee to push burdensome mandates on American job creators. Democrats’ goal was to name and shame companies until they parroted their woke social agenda,” he said. “Under my leadership, Republicans will refocus the Committee on the kitchen table issues that matter most to American families, from charting a path out of the dismal Biden economy to expanding opportunities for all Americans.”

Republican Missouri Rep. Ann Wagner will head the Subcommittee on Capital Markets, which is will reportedly identify policies to strength DEI in addition to its work on policies that “strengthen access to capital formation” and overseeing the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board, the Financial Accounting Standards Board and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.

The Subcommittee on Digital Assets, Financial Technology and Inclusion, led by Republican Arkansas Rep. French Hill, will focus on policies that promote “diversity and inclusion in the digital asset ecosystem” while working to make technology more accessible to “underserved communities.” The Subcommittee on National Security, Illicit Finance, and International Financial Institutions, led by Republican Missouri Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, will work on policy to “strengthen diversity and inclusion within the national security and international finance industry” while also addressing Chinese Communist Party influences.

“The creation of a new digital asset subcommittee, in addition to the returning subcommittees, will allow Republicans to address the most pressing issues for our financial system and the American people—rather than simply messaging,” McHenry said.

The Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Monetary Policy and the Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance also report a commitment to DEI policies. The subcommittees are headed by Republican Kentucky Rep. Andy Barr and Republican Ohio Rep. Warren Davidson, respectively.

Gonzalez alleged that McHenry did not completely rid the finance committee of DEI efforts because Republicans are “afraid” of confronting topics such as race, sex and the climate. He said that Republicans should be following Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has been spearheading the fight against DEI, particularly in colleges and universities, to begin his second term.

“If Republicans want love, they should buy a puppy,” Gonzalez told the DCNF, “because they’re not going to get love by doing this. In fact, they’re already being criticized for getting rid of the subcommittee.”

Huizenga, Hill, Luetkemeyer, Barr and Davidson did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment. Wagner referred to the committee for comment.

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