The Congressional Black Caucus is positioned to dramatically increase its clout next Congress if Democrats win control of the House.
The 43-member group, already one of the most powerful blocs among House Democrats, would control as many as five committee gavels in a Democratic House, including two exclusive panels, Ways and Means and Judiciary. Members of the group also would lead 15 subcommittees, six of them on exclusive panels. And Caucus Chairman Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) would be a contender for majority whip.
Earlier this year, many in the CBC, including Chairman Mel Watt (D-N.C.), vociferously defended Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) when Democratic leaders moved to oust him from the Ways and Means Committee.