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Politics Mondays: Congressional Black Caucus Projections For The 110th Congress - A Report Prepared by Mattox Woolfolk, LLC

The mid-term elections are likely to lead to significant power shifts in the U.S. House of Representatives. If the Democrats win a majority in the House of Representatives, twenty –two (22) members of the Congressional Black Caucus (“CBC”) are poised to become Chairs of Full or Subcommittees. If the Democrats do not win a majority in the House, twenty-two (22) Members of the Congressional Black Caucus will be Ranking (Democratic) Members (“RM’s”) of Full or Subcommittees. Moreover, a significant number of Congressional Black Caucus Members will serve on exclusive Committees such as the Appropriations, Ways and Means, Financial Services and Energy and Commerce Committees. Also, if the Democrats win a majority in the House, CBC Member and Democratic Caucus Chair Jim Clyburn will be well positioned to run for and win the Majority Whip position, the third highest position in the Democratic Caucus.

Committee and Subcommittee Chairmen wield significant power. Committee and Subcommittee Chairmen set Committee agendas, hire and manage Committee staff, conduct hearings, and coordinate the deliberations on bills being considered in their Committees. Because of their control over the legislative process, gaining the support of Committee and Subcommittee Chairmen will continue to be a central component of any successful legislative advocacy program.

The Congressional Black Caucus:

African American Members of the House of Representatives founded the Congressional Black Caucus in 1969. The organization was founded to strengthen the legislative efforts of the African American community. The CBC has grown to a record 43 Members (including Senator Barack Obama and Delegates Eleanor Holmes Norton and Donna Christian Christensen). The size of the Caucus and their growing influence makes their weekly meetings a frequent stop for Fortune 500 CEO’s, Cabinet Members, and political leadership. Congressman Melvin Watt serves as the current Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus. Congresswoman Carolyn Kilpatrick will be Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus in the next Congress.


Methodology/ Disclaimer:

The projections are derived from data obtained from public records, interviews with Members and staff, and media reports. All but one of the projected Chairs/RM’s is currently serving the same Committee or Subcommittee as a Ranking Member.

The projections are not intended to be an _expression of the interest or intent of any Member of Congress. They are merely estimations to be utilized for contingency planning in advocacy communities. A number of factors may affect the projections. They include potential changes to the seniority system and other Committee rules, Member interest or lack of interest in assuming Chairmanships/ RM’s, and any reorganization of Committee structure that eliminates or consolidates Committees or Subcommittees. Members giving up their current Committee seniority to move to more exclusive Committees will also affect projections.


* - Denotes that the Member currently serves as the Ranking Democrat of the listed Committee or Subcommittee.

? - Denotes that the Member will likely be posed with a decision on whether to choose a different Committee or Subcommittee Chairmanship other than their current Ranking Member position.

Chairman/ Ranking Member (RM)

Projections for the 110th Congress:

House Administration Committee Chairman/RM- Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald (D-CA)*

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman/RM- Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS)*

House Judiciary Committee Chairman/RM- Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI)*

House Intelligence Committee Chairman/RM- Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL); Hastings currently serves as the Ranking Member of the Rules Committee’s Subcommittee on Legislative and Budget Process.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman/RM- Rep. Charles B. Rangel (D-NY)*

Africa, Human Rights, and International Operations Subcommittee, International Relations Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Donald Payne (D-NJ)*

Commercial and Administrative Law Subcommittee, Judiciary Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Melvin Watt (D-NC)*? As a result of Rep. Bernard Sanders not running for re-election in order to run for Senate, there will be a Subcommittee Chairmanship opportunity on the Financial Services Committee. Congressman Watt will be well positioned to assume a Chairmanship on one of the Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittees. The major contingencies involve Rep. Velazquez’s interest in taking a Financial Services Subcommittee (she is in line to become Chairman/RM of the House Small Business Committee) and Mr. Watt’s interest in assuming a Subcommittee on Financial Services at the expense of his Subcommittee on Judiciary.

Criminal Justice, Drug Policy and Human Resources Subcommittee, Government Reform Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD)*

Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security Subcommittee, Judiciary Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA)*

Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management Subcommittee, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC)*

Energy and Resources Subcommittee, Government Reform Committee- Chairman/RM- Rep. Diane Watson (D-CA)*

Federalism and Census Subcommittee, Government Reform Committee- Chairman- Rep. Lacy Clay (D-MO)*

Federal Workforce and Agency Organization Subcommittee, Government Reform Committee- Chairman- Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL)*

Government Management, Finance, and Accountability Subcommittee, Government Reform Committee- Chairman- Rep. Edolphus Towns (D-NY)*? As a result of Congressman Sherrod Brown not running for re-election to his House seat in order to run for Senate, Congressman Towns will be in position to become Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee’s Health Subcommittee.

Health Subcommittee, Veterans Affairs Committee-Chairman- Rep. Julia Carson (D-IN)*

Housing and Community Opportunity Subcommittee, Financial Services Committee- Chairman- Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA)*

Immigration, Border Security, and Claims Subcommittee, Judiciary Committee- Chairman- Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX)*

Management, Integration and Oversight Subcommittee, Homeland Security Committee- Chairman- Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-FL)*

National Parks, Recreation, and Public Lands Subcommittee, Natural Resources Committee- Chairman- Rep. Donna Christian-Christensen (D- Virgin Islands)*

Oversight Subcommittee, Ways and Means Committee- Chairman- Rep. John Lewis (D-GA)*

Railroads Subcommittee, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee- Chairman- Rep. Corrine Brown (D-FL)*

Water Resources and the Environment Subcommittee, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee- Chairman- Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)*

Other Positions of note:

Appropriations Committee Members- Rep. James Clyburn, Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick, Rep. Chaka Fattah, Rep. Sanford Bishop, Jr.

Financial Services Committee Members- (1 in 3 Financial Services Committee Democrats is a Member of the Congressional Black Caucus)- Rep. Maxine Waters, Rep. Melvin Watt, Rep. Julia Carson, Rep. Gregory Meeks, Rep. Barbara Lee, Rep. Lacy Clay, Rep. David Scott, Rep. Artur Davis, Rep. Al Green, Rep. Emmanuel Cleaver, Rep. Gwen Moore.

Ways and Means Committee Members- Rep. Charles Rangel, Rep. John Lewis, Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones.

The Preceding Report Was Prepared by Mattox Woolfolk, LLC. For inquiries relating to the report, please contact Brian Woolfolk at Vist the website of Mattox Woolfolk, LLC at

Mattox Woolfolk, LLC

Monday, November 6, 2006

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The views and opinions expressed herein by the author do not necessarily represent the opinions or position of or Black Electorate Communications.

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