Rep. Ami Bera (D-Elk Grove) on Monday announced his candidacy to lead the campaign arm of House Democrats, introducing an internal leadership race between two California Democrats.
MP Tony Cárdenas (D-Pacoima) announced his offer on Friday.
In a letter to colleagues, Bera described himself as “the best choice” to head the Democratic Party’s campaign committee, citing his experience as a member of outgoing DCCC Chairman Sean Patrick Maloney’s leadership team.
Despite House Democrats beating expectations overall at the halfway point last week, Maloney (DN.Y.) lost his own bid for re-election, leaving the leadership post open.
Bera worked with the DCCC during the last election cycle, overseeing efforts to protect vulnerable incumbent Democrats in battlefield districts.
If elected DCCC chair, he said he would strive to be “a unifying bridge between districts and members” and “build a talented team that reflects the diversity, strengths and capabilities of our caucus and America.”
Bera, a doctor, is a first generation Indian.
He said he learned firsthand how to win in tough, expensive races when he ousted an incumbent Republican in the 2012 cycle.
“I know what it takes to win in a competitive race and how to communicate with a broad constituency,” said Bera. “Many of the practices that my office and campaign have implemented and refined are now part of the programs that many of you use.”
Rep. Colin Allred (D-Texas) praised Bera’s track record. “Having seen Ami help lead our efforts to protect and expand our electoral map, I know he is the most experienced and battle-hardened member leading the DCCC at this pivotal moment,” he said.
Bera also touted his giving ability, noting that this cycle he has raised or donated nearly $500,000 for Democratic members and candidates and helped the DCCC, $1.4 million for himself and more than 3.8 Turn around to raise millions of dollars for the frontline districts sought by Democrats and Republicans.
“House Democrats defied history last Tuesday. Not only did our frontliners win tight races, but we switched several seats from red to blue, and expanded and strengthened our base through historic turnout of young voters,” Bera said.
Control of the House of Representatives remains too close to declare as multiracial election results continue to be counted. Republicans look likely to win a slim majority.
GOP candidates won 212 seats in the next Congress, compared to Democrats’ 204. A party must secure at least 218 seats to gain a majority.
Democrats expect to vote on their internal party leadership positions by the end of the month.
A major unanswered question is what House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) is up to. She said in 2018 that she would step down from the House Democrat leadership in late 2022 to clear the way for the next generation.
But as that date approached, Pelosi declined to speak about her plans, leading some to speculate that she might consider moving on.
https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-11-14/california-democrats-battle-to-lead-house-democrats-campaign-arm-in-2024-cycle Two California Democrats vying to lead party’s campaign arm