U.S. Rep. Clyburn Wins New House Democratic Party Post As Cicilline Bows Out

U.S. Representative James Clyburn. (LBJ Library)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Representative James Clyburn on Thursday was elected to be assistant House Democratic leader starting in January, after Representative David Cicilline dropped his bid for the job.

Cicilline easily won re-election to the House on Nov. 8 and will continue representing his Rhode Island constituents for another two-year term.

Clyburn, 82, currently serves as party “whip,” the No. 2 House Democratic leadership position. He is retiring from that role to give way to a younger slate of top leaders. Representative Katherine Clark, 59, was elected to the No. 2 spot on Wednesday.

As assistant Democratic leader, Clyburn, who represents a South Carolina district, will lend a southerner’s voice to his party’s newly constituted House leadership.

“It is important that the South, rural communities, and those left out of economic progress of previous generations have a seat at the leadership table next Congress,” Clyburn said in a statement.

Clark is from Massachusetts. Hakeem Jeffries, the incoming Democratic leader, hails from New York and Pete Aguilar, the newly elected Democratic Caucus chairman, represents a district in California.

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