Sanchez withdraws from race for Dem Caucus chair

Sanchez withdraws from race for Dem Caucus chair
© Greg Nash
Rep. Linda SanchezLinda Teresa SánchezDem added to Ways and Means Committee amid desire for more Hispanic members House Dems worry about lack of women of color in leadership Rep. Linda Sanchez’s husband indicted on corruption charges MORE (D-Calif.) on Thursday withdrew from the race to replace outgoing Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.) as the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus in the next Congress.
 
In a letter to fellow Democrats, Sanchez cited “an unexpected family matter” for her decision to withdraw without providing details. She currently serves as vice chair of the caucus and was running for the fourth-ranking position.
 
“Serving as the Vice Chair of our caucus has been one of the great privileges of my career. I had hoped to apply my skills and experience from that role to be an effective Chair of the Democratic Caucus next Congress,” Sanchez wrote.
 
“Having served in leadership for the last two years I appreciate that the position has important responsibilities requiring extraordinary time and effort,” she continued. “Unfortunately, an unexpected family matter requiring my attention compels me to withdraw my name as a candidate for Chair of the Democratic Caucus.”
 
The surprise announcement comes just hours after Rep. Hakeem JeffriesHakeem Sekou JeffriesBlack Caucus sees power grow with new Democratic majority New Dem caucus chairman: Some wall is good, but not new wall Jeffries drops Naughty by Nature reference in nominating Pelosi MORE (D-N.Y.) declared his candidacy for the caucus chairman seat, which is being vacated after Crowley’s stunning primary defeat earlier this year.
 
Rep. Barbara LeeBarbara Jean LeeDemocrats vow to lift ban on federal funds for abortions Live coverage: House elects new Speaker as Dems take charge Ocasio-Cortez eyeing Jeffries as 2020 target: report MORE (D-Calif.) is also in the race for the post, setting the stage for a showdown between two popular liberal members of the Congressional Black Caucus.
 
Sanchez, 49, was elected vice chair of the caucus two years ago in a close race against Lee. A former chairwoman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Sanchez said Thursday she will remain in Congress and focus on her work on the powerful Ways and Means Committee.
 
“Our new Caucus Chair can count on my full support and I intend to remain a resource for new and returning Members,” she wrote.