Hoyer vs Clyburn for #2 spot in House Democratic caucus

posted at 12:15 pm on November 8, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

In a normal post-election process after a big loss, the party that lost its House majority would shed its previous leader and either look to previous leadership for a move upward or get fresh blood at the top.  Democrats have apparently chosen the worst of both worlds.  Nancy Pelosi’s decision to remain in control of the caucus has now forced a game of musical chairs that threatens to split the caucus, as both Steny Hoyer and James Clyburn want the #2 slot:

The fallout of Nancy Pelosi’s decision to stay in power — and her failure so far to engineer a smooth transition for her lieutenants — continued to ripple through the Democratic Caucus over the weekend as Steny Hoyer of Maryland and Jim Clyburn of South Carolina battled for the votes needed to become minority whip.

Hoyer’s allies said early Sunday that their man is poised for victory and is ready to identify a new batch of supporters from a broad cross section within the Democratic Caucus.

At the same time, during an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Clyburn left open the possibility that there might be a broader deal that would leave both he and Hoyer in the leadership.

But Clyburn’s camp is also privately telling members that he’s on the verge of locking down the votes he needs to win.

Pelosi apparently tried to get Clyburn to accept the only other leadership position remaining, the caucus chair, currently held by John Larson of Connecticut.  Clyburn refused to accept a “demotion,” however, even though the entire leadership structure just got “demoted” by the voters.  Instead, Clyburn began campaigning with the remainder of the caucus from the 111th Session to displace Hoyer from his current #2 position, which has forced Hoyer to participate in the infighting to hold onto any leadership post at all.

Actually, Clyburn might have been well positioned to fight for the top spot, especially among the progressives that more or less survived the Republican teanami on Tuesday.  Hoyer is seen as more moderate in both policy and tone, while Clyburn offers members the same progressive agenda of Pelosi with a brand-new face for voters.  In a fight between the two for a top spot, the minority whip position would have easily been handled as a consolation prize that would keep both in Democratic leadership, while Pelosi exited and removed the millstone she represented in the midterm elections from around their necks.

Instead, Pelosi’s efforts to keep her grip on power have created a potentially nasty and divisive fight over the crumbs left to Democrats after their midterm collapse.  Maybe Democrats ought to keep that me-first agenda in mind when they decide whether they want Pelosi to lead them into another election in two years, and into battle with Republicans in the next Congress.


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Clyburn? He’s even more of a crazy ignoramus than Pelosi. My vote’s for him and the epic gaffe fest that will follow.

RadClown on November 8, 2010 at 12:19 PM

MSNBC.com Headline:

GOP IN SEISMIC CIVIL WAR

blatantblue on November 8, 2010 at 12:19 PM

Breaking news: Dem’s circulating a letter……….

http://politics.blogs.foxnews.com/2010/11/08/fox-exclusive-defeated-democrats-pen-letter-implore-pelosi-step-aside

Typical liberals. It wasn’t their fault. Nothing they did. It was all the fault of those evil Republicans.

GarandFan on November 8, 2010 at 12:22 PM

Hope and pray that Clyburn wins — then goes on TV regularly to snarl through his mask.

RushBaby on November 8, 2010 at 12:24 PM

from a broad cross section within the Democratic Caucus.

The “broad” cross section is whole lot less broader after last Tuesday.

WashJeff on November 8, 2010 at 12:24 PM

Hoyer vs Clyburn

That’s like light beer versus toilet water. (in no particular order)

SlimyBill on November 8, 2010 at 12:24 PM

Pelosi should just tell Clyburn to “get to the Back of the Bus” where he belongs.

/sarc

barnone on November 8, 2010 at 12:25 PM

hahahahaha, this really is too perfect.

WisCon on November 8, 2010 at 12:26 PM

More progressive donks in higher Democrat positions make decision making easier in 2012 for voters. I’m all for that. Question: How does Hoyer escape getting labeled a racist?

a capella on November 8, 2010 at 12:26 PM

NYT:

REPUBLICAN MELTDOWN
WILL SCHISMS IN THE GOP THWART THE TEA PARTY AGENDA?

DAVID BROOKS: OF MICE AND MEN; THE GOP’S DISASTROUS COURSE TOWARDS TEA PARTYISM (pg. A5)

blatantblue on November 8, 2010 at 12:26 PM

Nancy Pelosi’s decision to remain in control of the caucus has now forced a game of musical chairs that threatens to split the caucus, as both Steny Hoyer and James Clyburn want the #2 slot:

tell you what Steny, change it up a bit and run as an independent then recruit Billy Jeff to get the black guy to step aside so you can win and you’ve got second place locked up tight…;)

surefire winner/

ted c on November 8, 2010 at 12:27 PM

Stay progressive, D’rats! Don’t betray your “principles”. Vote Pelosi/Clyburn!

cartooner on November 8, 2010 at 12:27 PM

Hoyer vs Clyburn

That’s like light beer versus toilet water. (in no particular order)

SlimyBill on November 8, 2010 at 12:24 PM

I think you understate exactly how repellent Clyburn is. He’s a one-trick pony whose only weapon is a race card which has been swiped out for years.

Making him a face of the caucus over Hoyer, who is about as much of a leftist as Clyburn or Pelosi but who is much better at spinning things in public as either, is a massive mistake for the Dems IMHO.

teke184 on November 8, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Where’s the CBC? Shouldn’t they be coming to Clyburn’s defense and calling Pelosi a raaaaacist?

Let’s have some fireworks here. Zippy’s out of town. Let’s let ‘er rip.

Cody1991 on November 8, 2010 at 12:35 PM

I really want Clyburn to be “the Man”. I can’t wait for anyone to ask him on the air about the N word lie against the Tea Party.

barnone on November 8, 2010 at 12:36 PM

Since the Dems are the party of Racism……I’d guess NO BLACK AMERICAN will ever get leadership position in the Congress.

and don’t look now but O’Jesus bowed again……

http://d.yimg.com/a/p/rids/20101108/i/r517208393.jpg?x=227&y=345&q=85&sig=ruDFWLqUZwoe4aMjL6ur_Q–

PappyD61 on November 8, 2010 at 12:37 PM

I’m surprised they haven’t created a new position called Assistant Speaker of the House so that no one’s feelings are hurt.

pedestrian on November 8, 2010 at 12:37 PM

I am shocked, shocked to learn that Steny Hoyer is a straight-up racist who only cares about maintaining his own personal position of privilege, rather than being willing to step aside so a poor Black man can advance. For shame!

/s

RedPepper on November 8, 2010 at 12:39 PM

Democrats better watch out. Clyburn will accuse them of spitting on him.

GarandFan on November 8, 2010 at 12:40 PM

Ordinarily, ex-Speaker Pelosi (sounds good, huh?) would step aside, let Hoyer become House minority leader, and Clyburn becomes minority whip. Instead, Pelosi grabs minority leader and leaves Clyburn and Hoyer to duke it out for minority whip.

Gold, Jerry!

Christien on November 8, 2010 at 12:40 PM

and don’t look now but O’Jesus bowed again……

http://d.yimg.com/a/p/rids/20101108/i/r517208393.jpg?x=227&y=345&q=85&sig=ruDFWLqUZwoe4aMjL6ur_Q–

PappyD61 on November 8, 2010 at 12:37 PM

he’s bowing before the Indians but he’s going to kneel before the Americans.

ted c on November 8, 2010 at 12:42 PM

Breaking news: Dem’s circulating a letter……….

http://politics.blogs.foxnews.com/2010/11/08/fox-exclusive-defeated-democrats-pen-letter-implore-pelosi-step-aside

Typical liberals. It wasn’t their fault. Nothing they did. It was all the fault of those evil Republicans.

GarandFan on November 8, 2010 at 12:22 PM

There is a reason that the saying, “You can dish it out, but you can’t take it.” is cliche.

Fighting over crumbs indeed.

You know that article that said there is a liberal gene… it must make people totally out of touch with reality.

petunia on November 8, 2010 at 12:44 PM

I’m surprised they haven’t created a new position called Assistant Speaker of the House so that no one’s feelings are hurt.

pedestrian on November 8, 2010 at 12:37 PM

Of course! And they can get a trophy! Problem solved.

petunia on November 8, 2010 at 12:45 PM

he’s bowing before the Indians but he’s going to kneel before the Americans.

ted c on November 8, 2010 at 12:42 PM

The guy who sees himself as the real-life Superman will soon be kneeling before Zod Boehner.

teke184 on November 8, 2010 at 12:46 PM

Steny Hoyer, you are a dirty raaaaaaaacist.

dczombie on November 8, 2010 at 12:47 PM

PappyD61 on November 8, 2010 at 12:37 PM

Pappy – I find that one pretty innocuous – a polite gesture in response to traditional Hindu greetings. Not like bowing to the Saudi king or Japanese emperor. Not something to get people stirred up over.

DougV on November 8, 2010 at 12:47 PM

I hope Clyburn wins … he’s a nut and idiot combined. A nutdiot. Should wonders for the democrats.

First order of business, draft a letter accusing all Republican House members of racism for attacking ObamaCare. Second order of business … attack the Tea Party.

Good agenda, in my opinion.

darwin on November 8, 2010 at 12:51 PM

Too funny. Affirmative-Action Nitwit Clyburn refuses to take a demotion.

Put another batch of popcorn in the kettle, Ma, this should be great fun! Now the CBC will be agitating against the DemWit Caucus while getting flanked by Colonel West on the right. No prisoners, Colonel West.

Jaibones on November 8, 2010 at 12:52 PM

Lugosi and Clyburn…wasn’t that a movie a few years back?

Gohawgs on November 8, 2010 at 12:54 PM

Very OT: Pilots refuse new TSA scans due to radiation concerns

ConservativePartyNow on November 8, 2010 at 12:55 PM

Clyburn in 2005: The Republican Deficit Society… a press release in which he attacks the GOP for a $353 Billion deficit… what some of now call “the frugal days.”

Clyburn also offered a bill in May 2007 demanding ALL troops be out of Iraq by December 2007.

He’s a nutjob and I wish him the best!! Vote Clyburn, Dems!

mankai on November 8, 2010 at 12:55 PM

This could get interesting.

Let’s be perfectly frank…

Give the gavel to Stenny Hoyer…and more of the same Pelosiesque Dem policies, programs, graft and all the rest will continue to roll from the Dem side. Hoyer is more slimy than a Maryland Snakehead…and more dangerous.

Don’t give the gavel to Clyburn and the Dems essentially tell Blacks “thanks for all your help getting Dems elected over the years, but ya still can’t sit in the parlor with the proper folk.”

And, there is something troubling about Clyburn becoming the minority whip…yes, whip…harkens back to the days of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. The imagery is just unsettling, to say the least.

Would not want to be in the senior Dem House leadership right now, it is a no win all the way around.

Probably prevent a lot of trouble by just keeping Pelosi around as the Minority Leader.

Benefit: Pelosi will probably get voted out in 2012…and the Dems can effectively blame her for the overall losses.

coldwarrior on November 8, 2010 at 12:56 PM

“A vote for Hoyer is a vote for Jim Crow, the KKK, & separate water fountains for Blacks!” – Clyburn

itsnotaboutme on November 8, 2010 at 1:00 PM

Go Clyburn! Talk about a repellant couple of headliners for House Democrats!!!

Don’t interrupt an enemy in the process of making a mistake.

Harry Schell on November 8, 2010 at 1:01 PM

as both Steny Hoyer and James Clyburn want the #2 slot:

well, most people think their agenda smells like #2 so it is appropriate!

search4truth on November 8, 2010 at 1:03 PM

It’s a good thing that the Republican’s huge victories were completely due to “poor messaging” on the part of Democrats. Because if it was really due to the American people rejecting Obama’s agenda, then Clyburn would have died 1,000,000 deaths from the pain of the 1,000,000 virtual lynchings that he felt the racist American electorate delivering to his jugular last tuesday.

ardenenoch on November 8, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Go Clyburn.

Do to the dems what you’ve done to the people of your districts!

MadDogF on November 8, 2010 at 1:04 PM

If only we could arrange to have them settle it one-on-one with knives on the House floor….

cthulhu on November 8, 2010 at 1:04 PM

It’s odd that somehow people have the misconception that politicians are more concerned with power and position than representing their constituents…(/s)

BlueCollarAstronaut on November 8, 2010 at 1:08 PM

Hah hah hah hah!

rbj on November 8, 2010 at 1:27 PM

“A vote for Hoyer is a vote for Jim Crow, the KKK, & separate water fountains for Blacks!” – Clyburn

itsnotaboutme on November 8, 2010 at 1:00 PM

Next thing you know he will even force them into their own caucus too!

Oh wait…nevermind.

Lily on November 8, 2010 at 1:31 PM

I vote Clyburn for number one and Dingell for number two. Too bad Grayson will be gone. Let’s make him a minority leader emeritus.

stefano1 on November 8, 2010 at 1:32 PM

This is awesome.

So at the top of the Donks’ House leadership there’ll be a liberal, conspiracy nut, and a race baiter.

ChrisB on November 8, 2010 at 1:33 PM

Just a thought: can Steny win election in Maryland if blacks (30% of the population) don’t vote for him?

Jaibones on November 8, 2010 at 1:40 PM

Why won’t either one of those neutered leftists challenge the wicked witch of the west for minority leader?

rplat on November 8, 2010 at 1:40 PM

Fooooooooooood Fiiiiiiiiight!

Branch Rickey on November 8, 2010 at 1:45 PM

Wasn’t Clyburn the one who compared tea party protest to a KKK rally?

I can see Hoyer in the Number #1 spot. Nancy isn’t going to survive this one.

Dr Evil on November 8, 2010 at 1:56 PM

And there’s a racial angle with the CBC lurking just beneath the surface, ready to burst out, all because of Nancy’s greed and ego.

This’ll be fun!

irishspy on November 8, 2010 at 2:08 PM

Hoyer: Clyburn is a Republican plant.
/s

Bahahahahaha!

Democrats can’t even get their own house in order. No wonder they so badly screwed up The People’s House!

TN Mom on November 8, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Wow! The ego’s in D.C.!!!

capejasmine on November 8, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Clyburn should be minority leader. Wait ’til the American public gets a load of him!

Ward Cleaver on November 8, 2010 at 2:13 PM

Pelosi and Clyburn out there daily!?

PASS THE PUDDING!!

Khun Joe on November 8, 2010 at 4:24 PM

Between Clyburn and Pelosi, I don’t think we can lose. They are both very dim bulbs and serve us well as representatives of the loony party. Steny Hoyer we should fear on the other hand, because he can come across as a reasonable man, and he does have a brain in his head.

slickwillie2001 on November 8, 2010 at 6:44 PM

The botox futures just jumped upon the news San Fran Nan wants to continue as “the face” of the Democrat Party.

chickasaw42 on November 8, 2010 at 8:13 PM