A step up from vice chairman, Rep. Xavier Becerra was tapped in unanimous consent and elected as chairman to the House Democratic Caucus for the 113th Congress.
The role comes as news surfaced of his growing appeal and his escalation up the ranks on the Hill. The Representative who serves the district of Los Angeles is now known as the fourth most powerful among the Democrats in the House.
Becerra has represented the 31st Congressional district since 1992. He is a member of the powerful Committee on Ways and Means and is Ranking Member of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Social Security.
Xavier Becerra wants to strengthen the middle class
“I am honored by the trust that my colleagues have placed in me to serve as their Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. Working with a re-elected President Barack Obama, I know that our growing, diverse and united Caucus will be a driving force in the 113th Congress to protect and strengthen the middle class, create good paying jobs, and keep moving our country forward!” Becerra stated in a press release after the announcement was made earlier Thursday.
In a similar fashion, other Democrats in the Caucus retained their leadership roles. That includes the re-election of Nancy Pelosi to continue as minority leader. Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer Maryland and Assistant Leader James Clyburn of South Carolina were also re-elected to their posts. Joseph Crowley was elected as vice chairman.
The caucus is considered the primary forum for development of party policy and legislative priorities and is composed of all Democratic representatives in the House.
Xavier Becerra was nominated by Congressman Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, seconded by Congresswoman Marcia Fudge of Ohio and Congresswoman-elect Julia Brownley of California.
His climb might have seemed gradual to supporters. He was already part of the “supercommittee”—Congress’s 12-member joint deficit-reduction panel and was elected as vice chairman to the House Democratic Caucus in 2009.
Pelosi also considers him a “close ally.” The minority leader appointed Becerra as assistant to the Speaker of the House of Representatives in 2006. The lawmaker graduated from Stanford University and grew up with three sisters in a one-room house in California.