Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-Laurens) won an appointment Tuesday to the House Energy and Commerce Committee where he will join 30 fellow Republicans and 24 Democrats on the body’s oldest standing legislative committee.
“Everyone know how passionate I am about energy policy and the importance of creating jobs by getting the government out of the way,” Duncan said in a Facebook post. “The Energy & Commerce Committee offers me the best opportunity to work on these key issues to help the people of my district, my state and my country.”
The Energy and Commerce Committee has jurisdiction over food and drug safety, environmental quality, telecommunications and health policy.
Duncan’s new position could be considered a welcome addition for South Carolina as leaders explore ways to be competitive in the energy sector, including nuclear power – particularly after the shutdown of the Summer Nuclear Facility project in Fairfield County earlier this year.
Duncan is a proponent of domestic energy independence, but his promotion of seismic testing and offshore oil drilling has run afoul of conversation groups, which believe those practices to be dangerous to the environment.
Members of the House of Representatives voted Duncan onto the committee following the recommendation of the House GOP Steering Committee. The last South Carolinian to with a permanent spot on the Energy and Commerce Committee was Carroll Campbell (1979-87).
Duncan, who was first elected to the House from S.C. District 3 in 2010, was a member of the 16-state Southern States Energy Board while a member of the state legislature.