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Posted at 10:33 AM ET, 12/ 2/2010

House Democrats add Blue Dog Matheson to whip team

By Felicia Sonmez

Blue Dog Democrats will have representation in their party's whip team when the 112th Congress convenes, a move that is an olive branch to conservative Democrats dissatisfied with their party leadership following last month's midterm elections.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) announced Thursday that Utah Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson will join the Democrats' whip team.

The move comes one month after House Democrats lost more than five-dozen seats - including more than half of the Blue Dog Coalition - as Republicans re-captured the House in the midterms.

"This Whip team has done a remarkable job keeping Democrats unified on the numerous challenges this Congress has addressed," Hoyer said in a statement. "Jim Matheson will be a tremendous addition to my team, bringing a moderate voice to the table. His perspective reflects what we heard from Americans last month, when they clearly called for us to work to find common ground to move our country forward."

Matheson was one of several Blue Dogs to be outspoken in calling for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to resign from her spot as Democratic leader following Democrats' sweeping losses this year.

"I think we just went through an election with a resounding result, the largest changeover since, what, 1948? I think when you go through that type of result, it's time to shake up," he told the Salt Lake Tribune two days after the election. "You've got to come up with a new lineup."

Last month, he backed a fellow Blue Dog, Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.), over Pelosi for Democratic leader when the House Democratic conference met to organize its leadership for the next congress. This week, Matheson reiterated his opposition to Pelosi.

Matheson will join the current whip team, which includes Senior Chief Deputy Whip John Lewis (D-Ga.) and Chief Deputy Whips G.K. Butterfield (N.C.), Joe Crowley (N.Y.), Diana DeGette (Colo.), Ed Pastor (Ariz.), Jan Schakowsky (Ill.), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.) and Maxine Waters (Calif.).

By Felicia Sonmez  | December 2, 2010; 10:33 AM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Why bother now? With the reelection of Nutsy Pelosi and her far left agenda it ensures the Democrats will be annihilated in the 2012 election. Watch the WaPo site and read the stories. You can see the Republicans advance quietly and efficiently. Broadening the Maxine Waters investigation and now adding Barney Frank. Obama compromising behind the scenes with Republicans. Democrats unable to pass anything that resembles a victory in legislation. Like Sherman's March to the Sea you can see Republican victories start lining up. I must say Progressives did one thing right. They united America to join to put an end to that far left progressive agenda that has been stealthily advancing for the last 20 years. In less than 2 years it's gone. Mandate lost and angry America poised to remove all trace of their existence. Why bother adding a Blue Dog unless he's the Democrat point man carrying the white flag of truce.

Posted by: Desertdiva1 | December 2, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

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