Party leaders approved for next Congress

Party leaders approved for next Congress

Democrats will control 55 seats to Republicans' 45 seats in the next Congress because two Independents - Sanders (Vt.) and King (Maine) - will caucus with Democrats.

Senate Democrats re-elected Sen. Reid (Nev.) to serve as majority leader while Sen. Durbin (Ill.) was re-elected as assistant majority leader and Sen. Schumer (N.Y.) as Democratic Conference vice chairman. Sen. Murray (Wash.) was re-elected as secretary of the conference and as chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Democrats will control 55 seats to Republicans' 45 seats in the next Congress because two Independents - Sanders (Vt.) and King (Maine) - will caucus with Democrats.

Republican Senators re-elected Sen. McConnell to be the minority leader, but as a result of Sen. Kyl’s (Ariz.) retirement, Republicans elected Sen. Cornyn (Texas) to serve as whip next year -- the second ranking Republican Senator. Sen. Cornyn will be succeeded as chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee by Sen. Moran (Kan.) who announced that Sen. Portman (Ohio) will be vice chairman for finance and Senator-elect Cruz (Texas) will serve as vice chairman for grass-roots operations and political outreach.

Other Republican leaders will retain their current positions: Sen. Thune (S.D.) as chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, Sen. Blunt (Mo.) as vice chair of the conference, and Sen. Barrasso (Wyo.) as chair of the Senate Republican Policy Committee.

House Republicans selected Rep. Boehner (Ohio) to lead their caucus and he will be re-elected Speaker when the House convenes in the 113th Congress in January. House Republicans re-elected Rep. Cantor (Va.) to return as majority leader and the third-ranking Republican, Rep. McCarthy (Calif.), will continue to serve as whip.

House Republicans also filled other slots in their leadership team. Rep. McMorris Rodgers (Wash.) defeated Rep. Price (Ga.) for the conference chairman post. Rep. Walden (Ore.) will chair the National Republican Campaign Committee and Rep. Lankford (Okla.) will be the Republican Policy Committee chairman.

Other Republican members of the leadership team for the 113th Congress include Rep. Jenkins (Kan.), conference vice-chair; Rep. Foxx (N.C.), conference secretary; Rep. Scott (S.C.), the sophomore class representative; Representative-elect Wagner (Mo.), freshman class representative; and Rep. Sessions (Texas), was picked by Speaker Boehner to become the new Rules Committee chairman. Other committee slots will not be decided until the Republican Steering Committee meets during the week of Nov. 26. However, Rep. Ryan (Wis.) received an endorsement from Speaker Boehner to continue to serve as House Budget Committee chairman.

House Democrats will not conduct their leadership elections until the week of Nov. 26, but Rep. Pelosi (Calif.) announced she intends to seek re-election as minority leader and is expected to be unopposed. Following her announcement, Rep. Hoyer (Md.), minority whip, and assistant leader Rep. Clyburn (S.C.) announced their intentions to seek re-election to their current posts as the second- and third-ranking House Democrats. They also are expected to be approved by the Democratic caucus the week of Nov. 26.

The major contested race in the Democratic caucus will be for vice chairman, a post being vacated by Rep. Becerra (Calif.), who is expected to move up to the caucus chairman post.

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