A younger generation of Democrats is chafing at being asked to stand aside and let a triumvirate of elders keep their leadership positions in the wake of a catastrophic midterm election result.Add to the fun we also have the ominous hints of racial overtones as Hoyer and Clyburn do battle.
Barring an unexpected shake-up, House Democrats next year will be led by a combination of Nancy Pelosi (Calif.), Steny Hoyer (Md.) and James Clyburn (S.C.) — lawmakers who are 70 or older and have served in Congress for decades.
Most rank-and-file Democrats would have been happy with these leaders had their party retained its majority in the 112th Congress, but the loss of the House and at least 60 seats led many to anticipate a changing of the guard.
“It is inescapable that the message that was sent by the American people is they want a change in direction. And a change in direction means a change in leadership,” Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.) said on Fox News last week.
Democratic Reps. Xavier Becerra (Calif.), Chris Van Hollen (Md.), Joseph Crowley (N.Y.) and Diana DeGette (Colo.), among others, were all seen as top contenders to move up but have found themselves in limbo as Pelosi locks down the minority-leader post and Hoyer and Clyburn vie for whip. Becerra is trying to hold on to the vice chairmanship of the caucus, while Van Hollen, the campaign chief appointed by Pelosi as assistant to the Speaker, is for now on the outside looking in.
None of those lawmakers has complained publicly about being shut out, but other Democrats have warned that the party risks ignoring a message from voters if they keep the same leaders in place.
“We can’t let them sit on the bench for too much longer,” one Democratic aide said, referring to the party’s younger lawmakers. “There’s a push to add in some new ideas and new faces and new energy.”
Another aide said the old guard’s stranglehold on the Democratic upper ranks has caused grumbling among younger members.
This is great. Here we have a party that for decades has played old against young, black against white and now it's consuming them. Now that's what we like to call social justice.
Linked at Instapundit. Thanks!