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U.S. Rep. John Katko

Kevin Rivoli, The Citizen

Central New York's congressional representative has been elected to lead a prominent group of moderate Republicans. 

U.S. Rep. John Katko is one of three co-chairs of the Tuesday Group, a coalition of more than 50 center-right Republicans that meets weekly to discuss issues and legislative priorities. 

Katko, R-Camillus, joins U.S. Reps. Charlie Dent, a Pennsylvania Republican, and Elise Stefanik, who represents New York's North Country, as co-chairs of the group. 

"Tuesday Group is a constructive group of dedicated members of Congress committed to advancing real solutions, and I'm honored to be selected to serve as co-chair alongside Reps. Dent and Stefanik," Katko said in a statement. "Despite the gridlock in Washington, I have always worked across the aisle to produce results. Serving in this capacity will strengthen my ability to continue this work as an independent voice for central New York."

Katko fills the post previously held by U.S. Rep. Tom MacArthur, a New Jersey Republican. MacArthur resigned as co-chair after a disagreement over an earlier version of the GOP health care bill. 

The Tuesday Group was established in 1994 and has been a major player in the House Republican caucus. One of Katko's predecessors, former U.S. Rep. Jim Walsh, was a member of the group. 

Katko has been a member of the Tuesday Group since joining Congress in 2015. 

The other co-chairs of the group praised Katko in separate statements Tuesday. Dent, who worked with Katko on an NCAA reform bill, called him a "strong, principled and pragmatic voice in Congress."

Stefanik, who was elected to Congress at the same time as Katko, said she's "excited" to have her New York colleague on the leadership team. 

"I've been pleased to work with John on issues facing our region and facing our nation since we arrived in Congress together, and there is no one more committed to achieving results for the people he represents," she said. 

Katko's term as co-chair will run for the remainder of the 115th Congress, which concludes in early Jan. 2019.