By Molly K. Hooper -The Hill
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) asked her colleagues Saturday to support Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) for “Assistant Leader,” a newly created third-ranking position at the leadership table.
In a letter to her fellow Democrats, Pelosi wrote “should I receive the privilege of serving as House Democratic Leader, I will be very honored to nominate our outstanding colleague, Congressman Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, to serve in the number three House Democratic position. I will also ask the Caucus to designate that position as Assistant Leader.”
House Democrats averted a nasty fight when Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the creation of the new No. 3 ranking spot for Clyburn.
The late Friday night news ended an internecine battle between current Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and Clyburn, both vying to be the No. 2 ranked House Dem in the 112th Congress.
According to a source close to Clyburn, the â€œsolutionâ€ is to create a third-ranking Democratic leadership position that â€œwould maintain the diversity of the Caucus as well as the wishes of a majority of the Caucus, that (Clyburn) remain in the number three leadership post.â€
With the loss of the Speakerâ€™s gavel, at least one Democrat in the leadership team was to be squeezed out of a high-ranking position.
But Pelosi appeared to avoid that scenario with the creation of this new No. 3 position, though the title and portfolio remained to be determined, according to a Democratic leadership source.
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