Posted: 11:12 pm Monday, November 14th, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
A week ago, Democrats were eagerly awaiting a big win for Hillary Clinton, more than ready to watch Republicans attack each other over their election loss. Instead, Donald Trump’s win has pushed Democrats into some political soul searching, which includes a fight over who should lead the Democratic National Committee.
Several candidates are already in the mix for the job of DNC chair: former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and South Carolina Democratic Party chair Jaime Harrison.
Ellison rolled out a series of endorsements from Democrats in Congress; he would be the first Muslim to hold such a prominent political position in the U.S.
My two cents: @KeithEllison would be a fantastic DNC Chair! Would bring talent, energy, diversity and moral clarity to DNC.
— Jared Huffman (@JaredHuffman) November 15, 2016
Some critics of Ellison said they’ve seen this before, a Democratic member of Congress running the DNC, not able to spend full time working for the party.
That’s why others have taken a look at Howard Dean, who has long talked about a 50 state strategy for Democrats, trying to court new supporters everywhere, Red and Blue.
With local and state getting demolished by GOP, I support @GovHowardDean at the moment for DNC Chair. Also his dedication is admirable.
— Colton Unden (@UndenColton) November 15, 2016
As for Harrison, the South Carolina party chair, he had been making noise in recent days, seemingly indicating that some in the party were urging him against a bid to run the DNC.
Let me say this. There is a lot of Bullying going on in the Dem Party these days. I won't be bullied & I won't be told to stand down.
— J. Harrison (@harrisonjaime) November 13, 2016
Meanwhile in Congress, House Democrats delayed leadership elections scheduled for Thursday, setting them for November 30.
“We need time to have that family conversation,” said Rep. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts, who said he’s not ready to dump Nancy Pelosi as leader, but just wants Democrats to talk more about their defeat.
“I think as Democrats we just had a really tough election and we need to have some serious questions and so some serious listening,” Moulton said.
A group of Democrats had sent a letter asking for the delay, as one Democrat, Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, even floated the idea of challenging Pelosi.
Ohio congressman Tim Ryan may challenge Pelosi for leadership
(Via DispatchPolitics) https://t.co/hAUj2cfBbt
— Alan Johnson (@ohioaj) November 15, 2016
Ryan won re-election with 73 percent of the vote – from an area that tilted heavily to Donald Trump in northeastern Ohio.
Despite the grumbling, there didn’t seem to be a coup that was about to sweep Pelosi out of her job – but now there is extra time for that to possibly grow.
Democrats in the House have put off their leadership elections until after Thanksgiving, which might be bad sign for Pelosi.
— Bob Costantini (@CostantiniWW1) November 15, 2016
Some Democrats had been hoping they would be anointing Pelosi as the next Speaker this week. But Trump squashed that dream a week ago.
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.