U.S. House of Representatives

Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/28/2012 10:11:32 PM PST
Updated: 12/29/2012 12:50:38 AM PST

The Inland Empire and High Desert will have new representatives in Congress next week after Democrat Gloria Negrete-McLeod and Republican Paul Cook take the oath of office.

Negrete-McLeod, Cook and other freshman legislators may find themselves joining a Congress that has already tumbled over the “fiscal cliff” before they even get a chance to set up their new offices.

“They might have us in a lockdown session where we try to put together what wasn’t done in December,” Cook said in a telephone interview.

In the aftermath of the Newtown, Conn., shooting, Congress is also expected to take up a new debate over gun control in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, freshman House members will also need to learn their way around Capitol Hill and acquaint themselves with their new committees.

Negrete-McLeod, whose 35th District includes the Pomona, Chino Valley, Ontario and Fontana areas, has been assigned to the Agriculture Committee.

Negrete-McLeod said she plans to assess the “lay of the land” before introducing any bills.

Cook represents the 8th Congressional District, which includes the Highland and Yucaipa areas as well as San Bernardino County mountain and desert communities and Inyo and Mono counties.

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