Monday, June 17, 2024

Hilda Solis Joins the Race for Democratic Leadership Post

The Hill newspaper is reporting that Congresswoman Hilda Solis (D-CA) strongly is considering a bid for the Democratic Caucus Vice Chairmanship if the position becomes available with the departure of Congressman Xavier Becerra. The job will open up if he becomes U.S. Trade Representative. As reported in La Plaza, Becerra met with President-elect Obama last week to discuss the position.

Solis was recently appointed to serve on the House Steering and Policy Committee but is apparently interested in climbing up the leadership ladder.

Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for Becerra stressed that no formal offer has been made, adding that the lawmaker and President-Elect Obama are “continuing their discussions about the job.”

While Becerra would become the second Hispanic to join the upper ranks of the Obama administration, Becerra is the only Hispanic member of the House Democratic leadership team.

His departure would yield “a complete void there,” said a Democratic aide. “In no form or fashion would Hispanics have direct representation at the leadership table.”

This would give Solis an opportunity to argue for her election as the best way to fill that void. Should Becerra leave Congress, the four-term lawmaker will make the “natural transition” pitch to the Caucus, according to aides familiar with her strategy.

According to The Hill, “given the make-up of the caucus, the growing influence that Hispanic voters have in Democratic politics and the commitment from Obama to put comprehensive immigration reform on his agenda, the argument to elect a Hispanic to replace Becerra could resonate.”

Although she has made no official announcement that she will pursue the Vice Chairmanship, in a statement Congresswoman Solis said, “Should Congressman Xavier Becerra elect to leave Congress for another position, I believe it is critical that the leadership of the Democratic Party in the U.S. House of Representatives continue to reflect our nation’s great diversity.”

The Hill