Political Notebook

Will Devin Nunes end up in the Trump administration?

The rumor mill has Rep. Devin Nunes on the radar for a Trump administration post, but the Tulare Republican says he’s happy where he’s at.
The rumor mill has Rep. Devin Nunes on the radar for a Trump administration post, but the Tulare Republican says he’s happy where he’s at. AP

Now that Donald Trump is president-elect, the rumor mill is kicking into overdrive on who might serve in his administration.

Add Rep. Devin Nunes’ name to the list, even though the Tulare Republican dismissed the chatter in an interview.

There are no concrete details, but if the possibility exists, Nunes’ areas of expertise are pretty obvious. First and foremost is his position as House Intelligence Committee chairman. It’s not hard to see Nunes at the State Department, or somewhere in the national security apparatus.

I’m perfectly happy where I’m at now. I’m not looking for a position nor have I been asked.

Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Tulare

Nunes’ other obvious strengths are agriculture and water. His 22nd Congressional District, centered in Fresno and Tulare counties, is strongly ag. He’s also long championed conservative viewpoints on water, such as building a dam at Temperance Flat, opposing the San Joaquin River settlement agreement and pushing for more Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta water deliveries to westside San Joaquin Valley farms.

Department of Agriculture? Interior?

Another upside for Nunes is loyalty, which seems important to Trump.

Nunes not only publicly backed Trump – and stuck by him through the myriad controversies that dogged his candidacy – but also co-hosted a Tulare fundraiser for him at the home of pistachio grower Corky Anderson that raised in excess of $1.3 million.

Ahead of the fundraiser, Nunes spent considerable face-to-face time with Trump, flying with him from the Bay Area to Los Angeles and briefing him on regional issues in preparation for the fundraiser.

So what does Nunes say?

“I’m perfectly happy where I’m at now,” he said. “I’m not looking for a position, nor have I been asked.”

Nunes described Trump’s election as the “chance of the century to get important legislation passed,” citing issues such as water and tax policy.

Besides being Intelligence Committee chairman, Nunes is also one of the highest-ranking Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee.

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