Congressional Democrats are expected to vote Wednesday on a new leadership structure that will form after the GOP becomes the majority party in January. The proposed leadership roster would have California Congresswoman and outgoing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as minority leader, Maryland congressman Steny Hoyer as minority whip, and South Carolina’s Sixth District Congressman Jim Clyburn in the newly created position of assistant leader.
Clyburn had earlier said he would like to make a run for whip but, in a CNN interview Wednesday morning, he expressed his satisfaction with the latest proposal.
Clyburn says Democrats were hurt at the polls in the last election because of a failure to effectively communicate to the American people their accomplishments, including stabilizing an economy that was at the brink of collapse.
Clyburn says he understands the hesitancy of some of his colleagues with the adjusted structure, but he is confident that the leadership vote will take place as scheduled on Wednesday.
Members of the Congressional Black Caucus have been supporting Clyburn for Whip. Clyburn says he has formally asked the CBC to support the leadership structure proposal, but ultimately the decision is up to each caucus member.
Oregon Democrat Peter DeFazio has been urging other House Democrats to put off picking a minority leader until after Thanksgiving, a delay that could buy time for Democratic opponents to organize their own campaigns for the post.
The national GOP used their “Fire Pelosi” bus tour to drum up support for Republican congressional candidates in order to oust Pelosi as House Speaker. A number of Democrats see Pelosi as a polarizing figure that has galvanized Republicans, especially among Tea Party members. However, Clyburn says Pelosi has successfully fought many battles and her leadership remains strong.