United States Senate Committee on Armed Services

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Chairman Carl Levin (D-MI) and former Chairman John Warner (R-VA) listen to Admiral Mike Mullen's confirmation hearing before the Armed Services Committee to become Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in July 2007. The Armed Services Committee is the prime scene of discussion regarding U.S. military in the Senate. United States Senate Committee on Armed Services, Levin D-MI & Warner R-VA, 7-31-2007.jpg
Chairman Carl Levin (D-MI) and former Chairman John Warner (R-VA) listen to Admiral Mike Mullen's confirmation hearing before the Armed Services Committee to become Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in July 2007. The Armed Services Committee is the prime scene of discussion regarding U.S. military in the Senate.
In June 2009, Armed Services Committee senators Joe Lieberman, Carl Levin (chair), and John McCain, listen to Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus deliver his opening remarks for the fiscal year 2010 budget request in June 2009. US Navy 090604-N-5549O-031 U.S. Senators Joe Lieberman, left, Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and John McCain listen to Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV) the Honorable Ray Mabus.jpg
In June 2009, Armed Services Committee senators Joe Lieberman, Carl Levin (chair), and John McCain, listen to Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus deliver his opening remarks for the fiscal year 2010 budget request in June 2009.
Hearing regarding "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates greets Ranking member, John McCain. December 2, 2010. Defense.gov News Photo 101202-N-0696M-047 - Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates greets Sen. John McCain prior to testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Dec. 2 2010. Gates.jpg
Hearing regarding "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates greets Ranking member, John McCain. December 2, 2010.
Hearing on sexual assault in the military, June 4, 2013 At table to the right, from left, Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard Adm. Robert Papp; Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Vaughn A. Ary, the staff judge advocate to the commandant of the Marine Corps; Commandant of 130604-A-HU462-217.jpg
Hearing on sexual assault in the military, June 4, 2013

The Committee on Armed Services (sometimes abbreviated SASC for Senate Armed Services Committee on its Web site) is a committee of the United States Senate empowered with legislative oversight of the nation’s military, including the Department of Defense, military research and development, nuclear energy (as pertaining to national security), benefits for members of the military, the Selective Service System and other matters related to defense policy. The Armed Services Committee was created as a result of the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 following U.S. victory in the Second World War. It merged the responsibilities of the Committee on Naval Affairs (established in 1816) and the Committee on Military Affairs (also established in 1816).

Contents

Considered one of the most powerful Senate committees, its broad mandate allowed it to report some of the most extensive and revolutionary legislation during the Cold War years, including the National Security Act of 1947. The committee tends to take a more bipartisan approach than other committees, as many of its members formerly served in the military or have major defense interests located in the states they come from. [1]

Jurisdiction

According to the Standing Rules of the United States Senate, all proposed legislation, messages, petitions, memorials, and other matters relating to the following subjects are referred to the Armed Services Committee: [2]

  1. Aeronautical and space activities pertaining to or primarily associated with the development of weapons systems or military operations.
  2. Common defense.
  3. Department of Defense, the Department of the Army, the Department of the Navy, and the Department of the Air Force, generally.
  4. Maintenance and operation of the Panama Canal, including administration, sanitation, and government of the Canal Zone.
  5. Military research and development.
  6. National security aspects of nuclear energy.
  7. Naval petroleum reserves, except those in Alaska.
  8. Pay, promotion, retirement, and other benefits and privileges of members of the Armed Forces, including overseas education of civilian and military dependents.
  9. Selective service system.
  10. Strategic and critical materials necessary for the common defense.

Members, 116th Congress

MajorityMinority

Members, 115th Congress

MajorityMinority

Source: [4]

Subcommittees

Subcommittee NameChairRanking Member
Airland   Tom Cotton (R-AR)  Angus King (I-ME)
Cybersecurity   Mike Rounds (R-SD)  Joe Manchin (D-WV)
Emerging Threats and Capabilities   Joni Ernst (R-IA)  Gary Peters (D-MI)
Personnel   Thom Tillis (R-NC)  Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Readiness and Management Support   Dan Sullivan (R-AK)  Tim Kaine (D-VA)
Seapower   David Perdue (R-GA)  Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
Strategic Forces   Deb Fischer (R-NE)  Martin Heinrich (D-NM)

Chairmen

Committee on Military Affairs, 1816–1947

ChairmanPartyStateYears
John Williams DRTN1816–1817
George M. Troup DRGA1817–1818
John Williams DRTN1818–1823
Andrew Jackson DRTN1823–1825
William Henry Harrison DROH1825–1828
Thomas Hart Benton DMO1828–1841
William Preston WSC1841–1842
John J. Crittenden WKY1842–1845
Thomas Hart Benton DMO1845–1847
Lewis Cass DMI1847–1848
Thomas Hart Benton DMO1848–1849
Jefferson Davis DMS1849–1851
James Shields DIL1851–1855
John Weller DCA1855–1857
Jefferson Davis DMS1857–1861
Robert Ward Johnson DAR1861
Henry Wilson RMA1861–1872
John A. Logan RIL1872–1877
George E. Spencer RAL1877–1879
Theodore Randolph DNJ1879–1881
John A. Logan RIL1881–1886
William Joyce Sewell RNJ1886–1887
Joseph R. Hawley RCT1887–1893
Edward Walthall DMS1893–1895
Joseph R. Hawley RCT1895–1905
Redfield Proctor RVT1905
Francis E. Warren RWY1905–1911
Henry A. du Pont RDE1911–1913
Joseph F. Johnston DAL1913
George E. Chamberlain DOR1913–1919
James W. Wadsworth, Jr. RNY1919–1927
David A. Reed RPA1927–1933
Morris Sheppard DTX1933–1941
Robert R. Reynolds DNC1941–1945
Elbert Thomas DUT1945–1947

Committee on Naval Affairs, 1816–1947

ChairmanPartyStateYears
Charles Tait DRGA1816–1818
Nathan Sanford DRNY1818–1819
James Pleasants DRVA1819–1823
James Lloyd FMA1823–1825
Robert Y. Hayne DSC1825–1832
George M. Dallas DPA1832–1833
Samuel Southard WNJ1833–1836
William C. Rives DVA1836–1839
Reuel Williams DME1839–1841
Willie P. Mangum WNC1841–1842
Richard H. Bayard WDE1842–1845
John Fairfield DME1845–1847
David Levy Yulee DFL1847–1851
William M. Gwin DCA1851–1855
Stephen Mallory DFL1855–1861
John P. Hale RNH1861–1864
James Grimes RIA1864–1870
Aaron Cragin RNH1870–1877
Aaron A. Sargent RCA1877–1879
John R. McPherson DNJ1879–1881
James Donald Cameron RPA1881–1893
John R. McPherson DNJ1893–1895
James Donald Cameron RPA1895–1897
Eugene Hale RME1897–1909
George C. Perkins RCA1909–1913
Benjamin Tillman DSC1913–1918
Claude A. Swanson DVA1918–1919
Carroll S. Page RVT1919–1923
Frederick Hale RME1923–1933
Park Trammell DFL1933–1936
David I. Walsh DMA1936–1947

Committee on Armed Services, 1947–present

ChairmanPartyStateYears
Chan Gurney Republican South Dakota1947–1949
Millard E. Tydings Democratic Maryland1949–1951
Richard B. Russell Democratic Georgia1951–1953
Leverett Saltonstall Republican Massachusetts1953–1955
Richard B. Russell Democratic Georgia1955–1969
John C. Stennis Democratic Mississippi1969–1981
John Tower Republican Texas1981–1985
Barry Goldwater Republican Arizona1985–1987
Sam Nunn Democratic Georgia1987–1995
Strom Thurmond Republican South Carolina1995–1999
John Warner Republican Virginia1999–2001
Carl Levin Democratic Michigan2001
John Warner Republican Virginia2001
Carl Levin Democratic Michigan2001–2003
John Warner Republican Virginia2003–2007
Carl Levin Democratic Michigan2007–2015
John McCain Republican Arizona2015–2018
Jim Inhofe Republican Oklahoma2018–Present

Historical committee rosters

Members, 111th Congress

MajorityMinority

Source: 2010  Congressional Record, Vol. 156, Page  S6226

Subcommittees

SubcommitteeChairRanking Minority Member
Airland Joe Lieberman (I-CT) John Thune (R-SD)
Emerging Threats and Capabilities Bill Nelson (D-FL) George LeMieux (R-FL)
Personnel Jim Webb (D-VA) Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Readiness and Management Support Evan Bayh (D-IN) Richard Burr (R-NC)
SeaPower Jack Reed (D-RI) Roger Wicker (R-MS)
Strategic Forces Ben Nelson (D-NE) David Vitter (R-LA)

Members, 112th Congress

MajorityMinority

Source: 2011  Congressional Record, Vol. 157, Page  S557

Subcommittees

SubcommitteeChairRanking Member
Airland Joe Lieberman (I-CT) Scott Brown (R-MA)
Emerging Threats and Capabilities Kay Hagan (D-NC) Rob Portman (R-OH)
Personnel Jim Webb (D-VA) Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Readiness and Management Support Claire McCaskill (D-MO) Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
Seapower Jack Reed (D-RI) Roger Wicker (R-MS)
Strategic Forces Ben Nelson (D-NE) Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Members, 113th Congress

MajorityMinority

Source: 2013  Congressional Record, Vol. 159, Page  S296

Subcommittees

SubcommitteeChairRanking Member
Airland Joe Manchin (D-WV) Roger Wicker (R-MS)
Emerging Threats and Capabilities Kay Hagan (D-NC) Deb Fischer (R-NE)
Personnel Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Readiness and Management Support Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
Seapower Jack Reed (D-RI) John McCain (R-AZ)
Strategic Forces Mark Udall (D-CO) Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

See also

Footnotes

  1. Steinhauer, Jennifer. "With Chairmanship, McCain Seizes Chance to Reshape Pentagon Agenda", The New York Times (June 9, 2015). Retrieved June 10, 2015.
  2. Rule XXV: Committees, Standing Rules of the United States Senate.
  3. 1 2 Angus King is an independent, but caucuses with the Democrats.
  4. "U.S. Senate: Committee on Armed Services". Senate.gov. Retrieved January 7, 2017.
  5. 1 2 3 Sens. Lieberman and King were elected as Independents, but caucused with Democrats on the committee.

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