FILE - In this Dec. 5, 2012, file photo Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., left, with Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., speaks to a witness during a hearing, to examine Hurricane Sandy, focusing on response and recovery and progress and challenges on Capitol Hill in Washington. Mikulski is set to take over as the first woman to chair the prestigious Senate Appropriations Committee, a position left open this week by the death of Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye. The Maryland Democrat was first elected to the Senate in 1986 after serving 10 years in the House and last year became the longest-serving woman in Senate history. With her ascendancy to the chairmanship of Appropriations, she enters a male-dominated realm that in the past has had sweeping power in deciding how the federal dollar will be dispersed around the country. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)

Associated Press
FILE - In this Dec. 5, 2012, file photo Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., left, with Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., speaks to a witness during a hearing, to examine Hurricane Sandy, focusing on response and recovery and progress and challenges on Capitol Hill in Washington. Mikulski is set to take over as the first woman to chair the prestigious Senate Appropriations Committee, a position left open this week by the death of Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye. The Maryland Democrat was first elected to the Senate in 1986 after serving 10 years in the House and last year became the longest-serving woman in Senate history. With her ascendancy to the chairmanship of Appropriations, she enters a male-dominated realm that in the past has had sweeping power in deciding how the federal dollar will be dispersed around the country. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)
FILE - In this Dec. 5, 2012, file photo Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., left, with Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., speaks to a witness during a hearing, to examine Hurricane Sandy, focusing on response and recovery and progress and challenges on Capitol Hill in Washington. Mikulski is set to take over as the first woman to chair the prestigious Senate Appropriations Committee, a position left open this week by the death of Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye. The Maryland Democrat was first elected to the Senate in 1986 after serving 10 years in the House and last year became the longest-serving woman in Senate history. With her ascendancy to the chairmanship of Appropriations, she enters a male-dominated realm that in the past has had sweeping power in deciding how the federal dollar will be dispersed around the country. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)
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