Democratic members of the House of Representatives are being told not to join a potential Biden administration as part of a strategy to protect the fragile Democratic majority in the House, according to a new report.
“Nancy is telling House members, ‘Now is not the time to leave,’” the Post reported it was told by a “Democratic Party official who’s been briefed by Democratic congressional reps.”
Hoyer, in fact, has told the transition team assembled by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden not to take from the Democrats in the House as it seeks to fill administration posts.
Although President Donald Trump has not conceded the election, Biden has begun forming a transition team based on projections from news organizations that he has won the White House.
Vacancies are filled by special elections, which would give Republicans a chance to gain even more seats than they did in the Nov. 3 election, when the minority party picked up at least a dozen seats.
“The Biden administration has to be a lot more sensitive of where you come from if you’re looking at members of Congress,” Democratic Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia said, according to Politico. “We cannot afford to put any seats in jeopardy.”
Democratic Rep. Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri said a Biden White House recruiting House Democrats is “not gonna happen. That’s the political reality and most people are going to see that.”
“That would be a dumb decision to put somebody from a seat that we turn around and lose in a special election. We don’t have a lot of seats in the House and the Senate to spare,” Cleaver said.
During a recent call among House Democrats, the topic of working for Biden was discussed.
“It’s not helpful to talk about that,” one Democratic leader said on the call said, according to the Post.
“The feeling is: Don’t make rash decisions about going to the administration without first considering consequences to the caucus,” a Democratic insider reportedly said.
The source said Democrats believe their majority is “razor thin.”
Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill denied she was behind such an effort.
“This is completely false,” Hammill said. “The Speaker wants the full contribution of House Democrats to the Biden-Harris mandate and to the future represented in the Administration.”
Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut said Biden should choose whomever he wants.
“I understand that one or two vacancies can make a difference, but if President-elect Biden thinks there’s someone in the Senate who is going to serve him well and is the clear best choice then he should choose that person,” Murphy said. “I would hope that Vice President Biden would look to members of Congress to fill out some key slots.”
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