Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.)

Representative Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), the chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, has endorsed Rep. James Clyburn, the highest-ranking African American in the House Democratic leadership, stating that he should be the party's second in command in the next Congress. The Washington Post reports that Lee stated, "Jim has spent a lifetime working to bridge what divides us," in a letter urging the Democratic Caucus to vote for the South Carolina Democrat. "In the 112th Congress, we will need Jim's dedication to thwart Republican efforts to repeal all of the progress we have made." Lee's letter follows Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland's release of the names of 30 rank-and-file Democrats who endorsed him for the same post. Hoyer's letter, authored by Rep. Linda Sanchez of California, praised him as a listener with the ability to stand up to Republicans. Clyburn and Hoyer must be gluttons for punishment, because whoever wins this post is in for an uphill battle, to say the least.

Read more at The Washington Post.