DeGette dropped from chief deputy whip spot

Rep. Diana DeGetteDiana Louise DeGetteOvernight Energy: Critics question data behind new Trump water rule | Groups seek more time to comment on Trump environmental rollback | EPA under scrutiny over backlog of toxic waste cleanups Democrats demand plan as EPA hits largest backlog of toxic waste cleanups in 15 years Overnight Energy: Trump issues rule replacing Obama-era waterway protections | Pelosi slams new rule as 'an outrageous assault' | Trump water policy exposes sharp divides MORE (D-Colo.) has been dropped as a chief deputy whip — a position she’s held the past 14 years — after briefly challenging Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) to become the third-ranking Democrat in the next Congress.

“This was not by her choice,” DeGette spokesman Matt Inzeo said Thursday.

Clyburn’s office declined to comment beyond the statement naming the whip team.

The chief deputy whip spots are chosen at the discretion of the Democratic whip — a position Clyburn held between 2007 and 2011, and will assume again next year when Democrats take over the majority.

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On Thursday, he announced two senior chief deputy whips in the next Congress — Reps. John LewisJohn LewisJames Taylor to perform at awards ceremony for Ruth Bader Ginsburg this week Obama marks MLK Day by honoring King for his 'poetic brilliance' and 'moral clarity' The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial MORE (Ga.) and Jan SchakowskyJanice (Jan) Danoff SchakowskyHillicon Valley: UK allows Huawei to build 5G in blow to Trump | Lawmakers warn decision threatens intel sharing | Work on privacy bill inches forward | Facebook restricts travel to China amid virus Lawmakers claim progress on online privacy bill House Democrats may call new impeachment witnesses if Senate doesn't MORE (Ill.) — and eight additional chief deputy whips: Reps. Debbie Wasserman SchultzDeborah (Debbie) Wasserman SchultzUS officials, world leaders arrive in Israel for World Holocaust Forum  Appropriators fume over reports of Trump plan to reprogram .2 billion for wall American Cancer Society says Trump doesn't get credit for drop in cancer deaths MORE (Fla.), G.K. ButterfieldGeorge (G.K.) Kenneth ButterfieldHouse poised to hand impeachment articles to Senate Democrat makes case for impeachment in Spanish during House floor debate Democrats likely to gain seats under new North Carolina maps MORE (N.C.), Peter WelchPeter Francis WelchBiden leads 2020 pack in congressional endorsements Providing more information on the prescription drug supply chain will help lower costs for all Impeachment hearing breaks into laughter after Democrat contrasts it to Hallmark movie MORE (Vt.), Terri SewellTerrycina (Terri) Andrea SewellSanders, Warren battle for progressive endorsements Biden gains endorsement from Alabama's lone Democratic House rep House panel advances Trump's new NAFTA MORE (Ala.), Sheila Jackson LeeSheila Jackson LeePatrick backs reparations in unveiling 'Equity Agenda for Black Americans' The US should work to counter India's actions against the people of Kashmir Sheila Jackson Lee tops colleagues in House floor speaking days over past decade MORE (Texas), Dan KildeeDaniel (Dan) Timothy KildeePelosi digs in on impeachment rules fight Pelosi faces decision on articles of impeachment Trump shocks, earns GOP rebukes with Dingell remarks MORE (Mich.), Pete AguilarPeter (Pete) Ray AguilarDCCC unveils initial dozen candidates for 'Red to Blue' program Senate removes 'white nationalist' from measure to screen military enlistees: report Hispanic Caucus dedicates Day of the Dead altar to migrants who died in US custody MORE (Calif.) and Henry Cuellar (Texas).

Of those 10 lawmakers, Jackson Lee, Kildee, Aguilar and Cuellar will be new arrivals to the chief deputy whip spot, while the others are already in those positions under the current whip, Rep. Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerHouse Democrats push back on Trump's efforts to take credit for the economy This week: Senate barrels toward showdown on impeachment witnesses The Hill's Morning Report - Trump trial begins with clash over rules MORE (D-Md.).

Clyburn also tapped Rep. Cedric RichmondCedric Levon RichmondBiden lines up high-profile surrogates to campaign in Iowa Congress struggles on rules for cyber warfare with Iran Election security, ransomware dominate cyber concerns for 2020 MORE (D-La.), the outgoing chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) and a close Clyburn ally, to become assistant to the majority whip — a newly created position.

“In my campaign for Majority Whip, I promised to involve every segment of our Caucus and empower the next generation of leaders as integral parts of the Whip team,” Clyburn said in a statement.

“As we fill out the rest of the Whip team in the coming days and weeks we will seek input from across the Caucus, including many of the Caucus’s younger members and our historic incoming freshman class to ensure their voices are heard,” Clyburn said.

Two sitting chief deputy whips will not be returning to those seats next year: DeGette and Rep. Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroThe Hill's Morning Report — Dems detail case to remove Trump for abuse of power Warren campaign hires two top Castro staffers Democrats press Trump administration to stop DNA collection from detained migrants MORE (Texas).

The absence of DeGette is notable, as she has been in that spot for the past seven Congresses, and it comes following her decision to challenge Clyburn for the whip position. That contest was embroiled in controversy, since Clyburn — the only African-American lawmaker in the top tier of leadership — was also the only senior leader to get a challenge.

DeGette’s move infuriated Clyburn and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), who expressed concerns that their influence in the caucus would be diluted, despite the significant contribution of black voters in shifting control of the House to the Democrats in last month’s midterms.

Richmond last month characterized her challenge as “offensive and insulting.”

DeGette rejected those criticisms, saying she simply wanted to take her long history as a senior member of the whip team to the next level.

“I’ve always loved whipping,” she said at the time. “I’ve been known to whip a dinner party.”

Still, more than a week before the Democrats’ closed-door leadership elections last month, DeGette dropped out of the race, citing the “internal pressure” facing her supporters to keep the leadership team of Reps. Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats offer mixed reactions to Trump's Mideast peace plan James Taylor to perform at awards ceremony for Ruth Bader Ginsburg this week Trump offers two-state peace plan for Israeli-Palestinian conflict amid skepticism MORE (D-Calif.), Hoyer and Clyburn intact in the 116th Congress.

“We have enough work to do without this internal pressure,” she said.

But the decision did not help her retain her spot on the Democrats’ whip team next year.