House Science Committee Chairman Robert Walker has quickly become a prominent figure in science and technology policy since assuming his new position earlier this month. Well-known on Capitol Hill for his persistent defense of his party's rights on the House floor in previous years, Walker is a close confidant of House Speaker Newt Gingrich.
Walker was first elected in 1976, and represents portions of Chester, Delaware, and Lancaster counties in Pennsylvania's 16th district. Before coming to Congress he was a high school teacher and congressional aide. Walker, 52, is one of the House's most well-known conservatives, and is Vice Chairman of the House Budget Committee.
Walker has been a steadfast supporter of the space station and basic research, and is a vigorous opponent of earmarking (see FYI #169, 1994, for additional views.) During House consideration last August of the Hydrogen, Fusion, and High Energy and Nuclear Physics Research Act, Walker offered what he called "an antilobbying amendment from the standpoint of lobbying with taxpayers' money." This was in response to the opposition mounted to his possible amendment for an authorization cap on the DOE General Science and Research Activities budget. He did not offer the authorization cap amendment, and the House did not accept the antilobbying amendment.
The educational institutions in the 16th district are: Franklin and Marshall College, Immaculata College, Lancaster Bible College, Lancaster Theological Seminary, Lincoln University, Millersville University of Pennsylvania, Thaddeus Stevens State Tech, and West Chester University.
Zip codes in the 16th district are (*shared by more than one district):
See FYIs #8 and 9 for his subcommittee's rosters. The address of the House Science Committee is: 2320 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515-6301.