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The new generation of Democratic Party leadership

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The universe always manages to make things right, albeit rather slowly sometimes. We seem to be inundated with bad news, and it is time to celebrate some good news. The Democrats voted in new leadership, and it is leadership the party has never seen or experienced. As New York Times wrote: “For the first time in congressional history, [the leadership] includes no white men.” Hakeem Jeffries is, of course, taking over the role Nancy Pelosi held for so long, making him the first Black in history to hold the role. The number 2 and 3 leaders are also part of the historical moment, with Katherine Clark elected as whip, and Pete Aguilar as chairman of the party caucus. This is such exciting news, and as the Times reported, it was a celebration.

The Times called the mood “jubilant,” as lawmakers chanted Pete Aguilar’s childhood nickname “Petey Pie,” which was bestowed by his grandmother. Yet another rep, Terri Sewell of Alabama, led a “call and response” for Hakeem Jeffries. It is definitely a step in the right direction for Democrats. Certainly, Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, and Dick Durbin have been fantastic leaders, but in this turbulent climate, new leadership is good and necessary. We will likely see gridlock from a divided Congress, but if Senator Warnock can pull out his runoff, we will see more of President Biden’s historical judicial nominees take the bench.



It is past time for leader and judges to reflect the rest of the country. No offense against white men, but others are perfectly able to lead, and it is time to let them do so. It is interesting that none of the new leaders were challenged, though the Times reported that Adam Schiff had considered running for minority leader. He ended up stepping aside to allow for the historic election of Jeffries. Ted Lieu commented that “Democrats are in array, Republicans are in disarray,” and they are, as Kevin McCarthy is scrambling to find support for his desired leadership position. He neither deserves nor needs to lead. Ted Lieu pointed out the obvious, that Democrats now have a Black man, a white woman, and a Latino man leading the party, which he said: “reflects the beautiful diversity of America.” Lieu also will become a “first” as the first Asian American to become vice chairman of the Democratic caucus. These elections reflect our world as it should be, and virtually everyone in Congress is behind these new leaders. That will serve them well as they prepare to do battle with a Republican majority Congress that has already shown it has no interest in serving the people but is looking for revenge.


Democrats need to continue to show their interest in serving the people. As the Times reported, Democrats share a commitment to “young people, seniors, immigrants, veterans, the poor, the sick, the afflicted, the least, the lost and the left behind.” Those are the very people who need strong leadership, and the Democrats have put that in place. Now, we are charged with supporting them in this fight.

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