Rep. James Clyburn says he plans to run for House majority whip in a new Democrat-controlled House and that he does not plan to challenge either House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi or Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer, the two top-ranked Democrats in the House.
Mr. Clyburn, South Carolina Democrat, is currently assistant Democratic leader and the third-ranking Democrat in House leadership. Mrs. Pelosi is expected to run for House speaker in the new Congress, and Mr. Hoyer could become House Majority Leader.
Mr. Clyburn told McClatchy early Wednesday that he would soon make his candidacy official in a letter to colleagues, heading off a potential battle with Mr. Hoyer for the No. 2 slot in party leadership in the House.
He told the news outlet that he never planned to challenge Mrs. Pelosi or Mr. Hoyer, but said that if Mrs. Pelosi doesn’t have the votes for speaker he would “explore a promotion.”
In a recent letter to colleagues, Rep. Cedric Richmond, who chairs the Congressional Black Caucus, said the CBC wanted to see an African-American lawmaker hold one of the two top leadership slots in any shake-up after the midterm elections, but Mr. Clyburn’s comments appear to have dashed those hopes for the time being.