WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff, D-Ga., is now chairman of the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., announced.
Founded in 1941, the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has broad powers and jurisdiction, including the power of subpoena, to investigate crime and corruption within or without the U.S. government, and to probe any aspect of U.S. government policy and operations.
At age 34 and as the subcommittee’s 12th chairman, Ossoff is its youngest ever. Former Georgia Sen. Sam Nunn chaired the subcommittee from 1979-1980 and 1987-1994.
The subcommittee was first led by Sen. (later President) Harry Truman, who investigated war profiteering from 1941-1948.
In 1957, under Chief Counsel Robert F. Kennedy, the subcommittee investigated labor racketeering.
In 1963, the subcommittee’s famous Valachi hearings exposed the Sicilian Mafia.
More recent investigations have included corporate abuses and financial crimes, international terrorism, domestic and transnational organized crime, war crimes, Enron, SARS preparedness, domestic surveillance, WMD (weapons of mass destruction) proliferation, the security of the U.S. energy supply, the 2007-08 financial crisis and the Iranian nuclear program.
Ossoff has a professional background in investigative journalism. After joining the Senate, Ossoff stepped down as CEO of Insight TWI, a 30-year-old investigative media production company he led since 2013. Under Ossoff’s leadership, the company produced internationally broadcast journalistic investigations of organized crime, official corruption, ISIS atrocities, war crimes committed by peacekeeping troops, corporate abuses and human trafficking.
“As a former investigative journalist, Sen. Ossoff is uniquely qualified to chair this prestigious subcommittee, which is instrumental to holding our nation’s most powerful entities accountable for wrongdoing,” said Peters. “I look forward to working with him to shed a light on fraud, financial crimes and other kinds of malpractice whether they take place in the public or private sector.”
“This subcommittee will pursue the truth, inform the public and hold power to account,” said Ossoff. “I look forward to working with Ranking Member Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and my subcommittee colleagues to serve the American public.”
Elected this year, Ossoff also serves on the Senate Judiciary, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Banking, and Rules Committees.