What to Expect From the New Congressional Coronavirus Subcommittee

    View Author April 2020

    On April 23, 2020, the US House of Representatives voted to establish a new investigative subcommittee of the Committee on Oversight and Reform called the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis (Subcommittee). The Subcommittee, which will be chaired by Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC), will have subpoena power and a broad mandate to examine any issues related to the COVID-19 crisis. The Subcommittee joins several other oversight mechanisms established by the recently-passed CARES Act, including a new Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery, a Pandemic Response Accountability Committee made up of existing federal Inspectors General, additional funding for the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) and a Congressional Oversight Commission with members appointed by the House and Senate Democratic and Republican leadership. Although it is still early, there are some clues indicating that the Subcommittee is expected to conduct the kind of nimble, political investigations of the private sector that the other entities may not.