Chair: Jon Tester
Projected Grade for the 117th Congress
0 Investigative Oversight Hearings
11 Policy/Legislative Hearings
15 Total HearingsLast updated: July 16, 2021, 3:52 p.m.
The committee has primary jurisdiction over the Veterans Affairs Department, the largest cabinet department after the Pentagon, with more than 350,000 employees, a budget of more than $200 billion, 1,200 hospital and other health care centers, serving millions of veterans every year with medical care, disability compensation, old-age pensions and other services. Medical care makes up the lion’s share of the agency’s discretionary budget, and the committee spends much of its time debating the costs and quality of care provided by the VA system. Its activities are closely monitored by influential veterans groups who represent millions of vets throughout the country, and it tends to operate in a bipartisan fashion. The committee has no subcommittees.
In the 116th Congress (2019-20), the committee under Chairs Johnny Isakson (R, Ga.) and Jerry Moran (R, Kans.) held just 28 hearings, the fewest of the period and well below the average for the five other Congresses, even when the abridged schedule for Covid-19 is taken into consideration.
In the 116th Congress, the committee held just 19 policy and legislative oversight hearings, the second-fewest in the period and well below average for the committee. Prior to the 115th Congress (2018-19), the committee had averaged about 30 policy and legislative oversight hearings per Congress.
In the 116th Congress the committee held no investigative oversight hearings, compared to three in the 115th. It was one of nine committees to hold no oversight hearings during the 116th Congress.
111th Congress: Daniel Akaka (D-HI)
112th Congress: Patty Murray (D-WA)
113th Congress: Bernie Sanders (D-VT)
114th Congress: Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
115th Congress: Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
116th Congress: Jerry Moran (R-KS) [Johnny Isakson (R-GA)]
117th Congress: Jon Tester (D-MT)
We are 31% of the way through the 117th Congress
Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs0 Investigative Oversight Hearings; 0% historical maximum
Number of Hearings
Committee Hearing Performance
* Adjustments have been applied so that committees' grades are not lowered by the constraints on hearings caused by Covid-19 [oversight-index.thelugarcenter.org/covid-19-statement]