(CNN) - Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, and Rep. James Clyburn, D-South Carolina, worked the phones all weekend, talking to Democratic lawmakers to try to gather support in their competition for the number two spot in the new House minority. Sources close to each insist to CNN their candidate will prevail.
“We will win,” said a senior Democratic source in the Hoyer camp, declining to speak on the record in order to talk about the internal process. “He [Hoyer] is racking up the votes. He knows how to do this because he has done this before,” said the source, referring to a bitter contest for House majority leader he ended up easily winning in 2006 against the late John Murtha.
1:23 p.m. - It has been the worse kept secret in Washington, but now it's official: House Democrats plan to leave for a five-week recess without trying to take up an extension of the Bush era middle class tax cuts.
First, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer confirmed it.
Then, I ran into Speaker Pelosi. I told her what Hoyer said, and asked her to put in her own words why the vote would not be held. Here's what she said:
Washington (CNN) - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said comedian Stephen Colbert embarrassed himself last week when he testified before Congress.
"I think his testimony was not appropriate," Hoyer told FOX News Sunday host Chris Wallace.
Colbert, the popular host of "The Colbert Report" on Comedy Central, spoke in character before members of a House judiciary subcommittee Friday to bring attention to the conditions facing undocumented farm workers. Colbert often spoke sarcastically, prompting laughter in the hearing room and drawing Republicans' scorn.
Washington (CNN) - After several weeks of news coverage indicating Democrats could be on the verge of losing control of the House of Representatives, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer proclaimed Democrats are a "party on the move," and maintained the more the public learns about what Republicans are proposing, the better Democrats' chances are of keeping their majority.
"No I don't think there's a death knell. I think there's a resurgence of Democrats throughout the country," Hoyer said, responding to a reporter's question about whether recent news stories show a "death knell" for Democrats.
The number two House Democrat mocked news coverage of a generic ballot poll done by Gallup several weeks ago that showed the American people favored Republican candidates over Democratic ones by double digits. He noted that he didn't see the same blaring headlines this week when a the same poll showed the parties were virtually tied.
Although Hoyer's tone was confident about Democrats' chances in November, he admitted that the massive budget deficit is a major issue his party must confront.
Washington (CNN) – Thirty-one House Democrats, most of whom face tough re-election bids this fall, have signed a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer urging them to extend expiring tax breaks for all income levels, including the wealthy.
Republicans also say the tax cuts, introduced by President George W. Bush in 2001, should be kept in place for everyone.
Pelosi and other House Democratic leaders have made it clear they support President Obama's proposal to vote on a bill that only renews tax breaks for those making $250,000 and under.
With the midterm elections less than two months away, leaders have not yet decided whether they will schedule a vote on the legislation before voters go to the polls.
Pelosi and other House Democratic leaders have made it clear they support President Obama's proposal to vote on a bill that only renews tax breaks for those making $250,000 and under. But with the midterm elections less than two months away, leaders have not yet decided whether they will schedule a vote on the legislation before voters go to the polls.
The letter–written by Utah Rep. Jim Matheson, Illinois Rep. Melissa Bean, Virginia Rep. Glenn Nye and Michigan Rep. Gary Peters–states that after listening to economists, small businesses and families over recent weeks they are concerned that "raising any taxes right now could negatively impact economic growth."
Washington (CNN) – House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer left open the possibility Wednesday that Democrats could consider proposals to extend tax cuts to upper income taxpayers.
"I'm always, as you know, prepared to discuss alternatives so we can move forward," Hoyer said at his weekly session with reporters on Capitol Hill.
But Hoyer repeatedly argued for President Obama's proposal – legislation that would just extend tax cuts for those making $250,000 a year and under.
"I've made my position very clear, Hoyer said, adding, "The President's position is the position that I think makes sense for working people, for our economy, and for long term concerns we have about the deficit."
(CNN) - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on Sunday expressed his confidence in congressional Democrats’ ability to maintain their majority in the House of Representatives, but conceded his party will “probably” lose seats.
“We’re going to hold the House,” Hoyer repeatedly told CNN’s Candy Crowley on "State of the Union."
“Our candidates are feeling good,” Hoyer added.
The two leading non-partisan political handicappers, Stuart Rothenberg and Charlie Cook, both predict massive Republican gains in the House this November. The Rothenberg Political Report upped its prediction on Tuesday to 37 to 42 additional seats for Republicans and said that gains of 45 to 55 seats are possible. The Cook Political Report predicts GOP gains of at least 40 seats. Republicans must gain 39 seats in the House to retake the majority.
Washington (CNN) - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Tuesday it is up to Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel of New York to decide whether to resign over pending ethics allegations.
"Mr. Rangel has to do what Mr. Rangel believes is appropriate and proper," Hoyer told reporters, taking a neutral stance instead of offering support for the 20-term veteran of the House Democratic caucus that Hoyer leads.
Rangel said Tuesday he wouldn't talk about whether there is a settlement in the works to head off Thursday's hearing by the House ethics committee, which will make public a report of Rangel's alleged violations of House rules. In brief comments to reporters, Rangel confirmed his lawyers were talking with lawyers for the ethics committee.
Washington (CNN) - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer acknowledged Tuesday that closing down the Guantanamo Bay prison is not a top priority for congressional Democrats.
In response to a question from a reporter about where shutting down Gitmo stands, Hoyer said, "I think that's not an item, as you point out, of real current discussion. There's some very big issues confronting us - dealing with growing the economy and Iraq and Afghanistan."
Hoyer added, "I think you're not going to see it discussed very broadly in the near term."