Congressman Tim Ryan Responds to Leader Pelosi’s Proposed Democratic Caucus Reforms

Nov 28, 2016

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan made the following statement in response to Leader Nancy Pelosi’s  proposed Democratic Caucus reforms:

It is evident that Leader Pelosi’s proposed reforms will only serve to further consolidate her power over the Caucus. There is a clear desire among our members to democratize and decentralize the Democratic Caucus by returning more power to our rank and file members and Committees. Importantly, Leader Pelosi should strongly consider requiring the DCCC Chair be elected in the same manner as the top five members of our leadership—a reform that would ensure the DCCC Chair is not just accountable to the Leader but to the Caucus as a whole.  It would be helpful to remember that the DCCC works for us and our candidates, we do not work for it. As Democrats, we need to take a hard look at our current campaign model, because we keep losing. We need to reduce the DCCC’s command and control approach, whereby consultants in Washington, DC with little or no local connections are making decisions for campaigns in big cities, small towns, and rural areas of America. We have to create a new model for competing and winning anywhere.

Leader Pelosi has also, unfortunately, proposed changing the role of Assistant Democratic Leader—a position which plays an integral role in our Leadership. That is why my proposed reforms would not change this position, but instead would add to the current leadership team a new, elected position reserved for members with three terms or less.  Again, this position will be directly elected. 

We must continue our efforts to decentralize the power in Caucus so every member is a part of the team and plays a role in shaping our future.  Finally, members are concerned about our path forward on Wednesday. There must be clarification of the rules and procedures that will be in place to address the many changes that have been proposed by Leader Pelosi.