Pelosi yields some powers to her caucus

Nov. 19, 2010 at 10:23 AM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 19 (UPI) -- Nancy Pelosi has accepted some curbs on her appointment powers in a compromise approved by House Democrats.

The Democratic Caucus passed an amendment Thursday giving the Steering and Policy Committee authority to pick its leaders, who previously had been appointed by the party leader, Pelosi, D-Calif., The Hill reported.

The conservative Blue Dog faction had wanted the chairman and vice chairman to be elected by the full caucus, but didn't have the votes.

Before the caucus, Blue Dog leader Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, withdrew three other proposals to limit Pelosi's internal authority, including a move to have the heads of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Rules Committee be elected by the caucus rather than named by the party leader.

Thursday's meeting was the third consecutive closed-door session House Democrats held after losing their majority in the Nov. 2 election.

Asked after the meeting if he was satisfied with the compromise, Matheson said, "No."

He was appointed to the caucus committee governing its organization and structure.

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