Nov 23, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Feinstein to step down as top Democrat on Senate Judiciary Committee

Dianne Feinstein.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) will not seek a leadership position on the Senate Judiciary Committee next year, regardless of whether Democrats take control of the Senate in upcoming runoff elections, she said Monday.

Why it matters: Feinstein, who at 87 years old is the oldest member of the Senate, has at times drawn backlash from progressives in her party, including for her approach to the confirmation hearings of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett.

  • Feinstein has served as the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee since 2017. She will continue to serve on the Judiciary, Intelligence, Appropriations and Rules committees.

What she's saying: Feinstein said she will focus her attention on California's wildfire and drought crises. She added, "I also believe that defeating COVID-19, combating climate change and protecting access to health care are critical national priorities that require even more concentration."

  • “I look forward to continuing to serve as a senior Democrat on the Judiciary, Intelligence, Appropriations and Rules committees as we work with the Biden administration on priorities like gun safety, immigration reform and addressing inequities in criminal justice. I will continue to do my utmost to bring about positive change in the coming years.”
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