Congressman who fought for Guyana’s democracy elected Chair of US Foreign Affairs Committee

Congressman Gregory W. Meeks

Congressman Gregory W. Meeks (NY-05), senior Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, was on Thursday elected to Chair the House Foreign Affairs Committee, becoming the first African-American Chair in the committee’s history.

Back in July of this year, Congressman Meeks had issued a statement along with fellow Congressman Albio Sires, denouncing the APNU+AFC attempt to subvert the will of the Guyanese electorate.

“We urge the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to promptly issue a Declaration of Results based on the results of the national recount. CARICOM, the Organization of American States, diplomatic missions, and domestic civil society organizations all confirmed that the recount was completed in a professional and transparent manner, providing the basis for a Declaration of Results”, the duo had said in a statement.

“We condemn all efforts to undermine the credibility of the March 2nd election, including recent actions taken by the Chief Elections Officer to effectively disenfranchise thousands of voters and manipulate the vote count. We fully support GECOM Chairwoman Claudette Singh’s decision to dismiss all of the Chief Elections Officer’s fraudulent reports and are confident that she will declare a winner based on the actual vote count, as certified through the recount process”, they added.

However, following his election, he said that he was “incredibly honored to be elected Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, a committee that I have served on throughout my tenure of service in Congress. There is extraordinary talent across the committee and Democratic caucus, and I look forward to working closely with Members as we look ahead to a new era of US global affairs.

Meeks, presently the third-ranking member of the committee, is well aware of the enormity of this moment and prepared to act upon it.

“I know of the broad shoulders that I stand on and to think of the history of this committee and this Congress and to now serve as chair,” the 22-year Washington veteran says.

“I’m just so grateful and understand the responsibility that it places on me to make sure we have a new and different foreign policy than we’ve had over the past four years and make sure that we elevate places in the world, particularly where there are folks from Africa or of African descent.”

Rep. Meeks assumes the gavel of the House Foreign Affairs Committee at the start of the 117th Congress. He is looking forward to working with President-elect Joe Biden and reassuring allies of the United States that they once again have a willing partner.