Top Dem rep says diverse 2020 field shows party's 'maturity'

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie ThompsonBennie Gordon ThompsonDHS suggests new role for cybersecurity staff — helping with border crisis Hillicon Valley: Trump takes flak for not joining anti-extremism pact | Phone carriers largely end sharing of location data | Huawei pushes back on ban | Florida lawmakers demand to learn counties hacked by Russians | Feds bust 0M cybercrime group Trump takes flak for not joining anti-extremism pact MORE (D-Miss.) said in an interview that aired Wednesday on "Rising" that the diverse field emerging in the 2020 Democratic primary illustrates that the party is maturing. 

“I think it’s the maturing of the party, and it’s a recognition that’s no longer a solo candidate of a particular gender or race that we can expect," Thompson told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on Tuesday, adding that the diversity of the field also shows that competition among good candidates is "healthy" for the Democratic Party. 

Various candidates have thrown their hats into the growing 2020 Democratic primary ring or launched exploratory committees, including Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (Calif.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (Mass.), Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth Gillibrand2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues Overnight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — CBO officials testify on pros and cons of 'Medicare for All' | Booker vows to form White House office on abortion rights | Measles outbreak spreads with cases now in half the country Lee, Sanders introduce bill to tax Wall Street transactions MORE (N.Y.), and former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro. 

Thompson also praised the historic wave of diverse candidates elected to the House in 2018, saying it was another sign of the Democratic Party growing. 

"It's the melting pot of America manifesting itself in the U.S. House of Representatives," Thompson said. "You have races, religions, creeds, represented there." 

"Again, it's the maturing, and broadening, rightfully so, of the Democratic Party," he said.  

— Julia Manchester