Although it is historically rare for freshmen members of Congress to obtain sought-after seats on top committees, progressive groups said they saw the news as a setback, as they hope to enact sweeping environmental and economic reforms in the coming years. The Steering and Policy Committee, chaired by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, formally assigns members to committees…

Democratic Massachusetts Rep. Richard Neal, who chairs the House Ways and Means Committee, announced this week that 10 new returing Democrats had been selected to join the panel, including five members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus: Reps. Dwight Evans, Don Beyer, Gwen Moore, Jimmy Panetta and Steven Horsford.

The Ways and Means Committee has vast authority over taxation, as well as Social Security and Medicare. New York Democratic Rep. Tom Suozzi was named to the panel instead of Ocasio-Cortez.