By: Sam Dorman

March 14, 2020

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, has officially started serving as Ranking Member on the House Judiciary Committee, placing one of the president’s most vocal defenders on a key committee before the 2020 elections.

The Judiciary Committee announced on Friday that Jordan had taken over the position from Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., who was required, according to GOP conference rules, to step down as he pursues a Senate bid.

At the beginning of February, the House GOP Steering Committee approved Jordan’s new position in a “totally unified decision all around,” House GOP Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., reportedly said. Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., another vocal Trump supporter, is slated to take over Jordan’s previous position as Ranking Member on the House Oversight Committee.

Jordan entered Congress in 2007 and made a name for himself for, among other things, his fiery confrontations during hearings and his efforts investigating the 2011 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, Libya.

The Judiciary Committee was an integral part of Congress’ attempts to investigate President Trump on several issues, including his July 25 phone call with the president of Ukraine. That incident led to an impeachment inquiry and ultimately, an acquittal in the U.S. Senate.

Democrats have already indicated that they’ll continue the Russia investigation in Congress as well as revisit impeachment, despite the Senate’s acquittal.

Both Jordan and Meadows served on the president’s legal team during impeachment proceedings. As ranking member, Jordan will be in a key position to combat Democratic efforts to continue pursuing the president on issues like the Russia investigation.

Jordan has been a proponent of FISA reforms, claiming that the Justice Department illegally surveilled the president’s adviser, Carter Page, during the 2016 election cycle. That surveillance served as a primary point of contention as Republicans accused the DOJ of abusing its authority in the Russia investigation.

The House passed FISA reauthorization earlier this week with a bipartisan vote that included approval from both Jordan and House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y.

“The legislation begins to address the problems that we saw with the FBI’s illegal surveillance of Trump campaign associate Carter Page,” Jordan said.