The House’s new minority leader, Hakeem Jeffries (DN.Y.), named Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.) to chair the House Democrats’ campaign arm Tuesday, bypassing the two Californians who were actively seeking the post.
“She’s the right leader with the right experience and the right demeanor to lead this pivotal moment,” said Jeffries, who will take over the reins from outgoing Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) next month .
His decision comes as a blow to MPs Ami Bera (D-Elk Grove) and Tony Cárdenas (D-Pacoima), both of whom had expressed interest in the job. They had declared their candidacy for the post when it was one of the party leadership positions decided by a faction-wide election.
But last month Democrats instead decided to give Jeffries the power to select a DCCC chairman, subject to confirmation by the full caucus.
Cárdenas jumped in first in the DCCC race, citing his record-breaking fundraising at the campaign arm of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, BOLD PAC, in a Nov. 11 letter to colleagues.
Bera announced his candidacy days later, highlighting his experience within the DCCC as its frontline chairman, responsible for protecting vulnerable incumbents in battlefield districts.
Her race took an ugly turn, especially amid what was an unusually civil election for the Democratic leadership of the House of Representatives this year.
Cárdenas’ critics spread reports of a 2019 lawsuit alleging he had molested a 16-year-old girl years earlier.
Cárdenas had denied the allegations and the woman later dropped the lawsuit.
Bera’s candidacy also came with some baggage, as his opponents resurfaced reports that his father had been convicted in 2016 after prosecutors “pursue at least $260,000 in illegal donations that were funneled through donors but were secretly passed on by the elder Bera.” multiple bank accounts were paid, which were used to further cover his tracks,” the Times reported.
DelBene’s appointment adds another woman to the House Democrat leadership team, which includes new minority whip Katherine Clark (D-Mass.).
She won a special election in 2012 to succeed former Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) who became governor.
“Democrats are eager to show Americans that governance can work, to advance policies that will make a difference for families, workers and communities, and to stand up against the extremism and chaos of MAGA Republicans,” DelBene said in a statement on Tuesday.
https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-12-20/jeffries-taps-delbene-to-run-house-democrats-campaign-arm Jeffries bypasses two Californians in his pick to lead DCCC