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Pelosi, Hoyer Lead List of Gephardt’s 30 House Backers

Rep. Richard Gephardt (D-Mo.) unveiled Wednesday the long-awaited list of House Members backing his presidential bid, rolling out 30 of his colleagues, including the chamber’s two Democratic leaders.

Gephardt, the former Minority Leader, has been courting Members for some time, and specifically wanted to seal the backing of his successor, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (Calif.), and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (Md.). While the two Democratic leaders are both on board, Pelosi has said she likely won’t have time to stump for Gephardt.

Pelosi, who has not endorsed in a contested presidential primary since 1976, said Gephardt will be a great leader, citing both his knowledge of the issues and his experience. “I think that this was an opportunity I didn’t want to be missed for future generations,” said Pelosi.

Hoyer, who endorsed Gephardt when he ran for president in 1988, plans to hit the trail for his longtime friend.

“Nothing in 14 years has persuaded me from my conviction that I was right in ’88,” the Minority Whip said.

Gephardt, who promised that the number of Members revealed Wednesday is a start, not an end, said: “I can’t think of a better endorsement than the people who worked with me. Nobody knows more about me as a leader than they do. I think this is a great number.”

Among the 28 other supporters Gephardt laid out, several already have been publicly supportive of the former Minority Leader. But a good share is new to his endorsement pool.

The list includes five full committee and 10 subcommittee ranking members. Gephardt’s list also included 11 members of the Whip organization: the Minority Whip, two chief deputies, five senior Whips and three assistant Whips.

Gephardt aides have said the Missouri lawmaker will continue to reveal the names of Members endorsing his run for president. They have promised that in the end Gephardt will have more House backers than any other candidate seeking the Democratic nomination.

Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.) recently laid out his list of 11 House supporters. Other candidates have also captured a small share of House backers.

See Thursday’s edition of Roll Call newspaper for the complete list of Congressional endorsements. Below are Gephardt’s House supporters:

  • Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Minority Leader
  • Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), Minority Whip
  • John Spratt (D-S.C.), Assistant to the Democratic Leader and ranking member, Budget Committee
  • Ed Pastor (D-Ariz.), Chief Deputy Whip
  • Max Sandlin (D-Texas), Chief Deputy Whip
  • David Obey (D-Wis.), ranking member, Appropriations Committee
  • Ike Skelton (D-Mo.), ranking member, Armed Services Committee
  • Lane Evans (D-Ill.), ranking member, Veterans’ Affairs Committee
  • John Murtha (D-Pa.), ranking member, Appropriation subcommittee on Defense
  • Howard Berman (D-Calif.), ranking member, Committee on Standards of Official Conduct
  • Robert Matsui (D-Calif.), ranking member, Ways and Means subcommittee on Social Security, and chairman, DCCC
  • Ben Cardin (D-Md.), ranking member, Ways and Means subcommittee on human resources
  • Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), ranking member, Energy and Commerce subcommittee on health
  • Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), ranking member, Appropriations subcommittee on foreign operations
  • Jerry Costello (D-Ill.), ranking member, Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on water resources and environment
  • Rob Andrews (D-N.J.), ranking member, Education and the Workforce subcommittee on employer-employee relations
  • Tim Holden (D-Pa.), ranking member, Agriculture subcommittee on conservation, credit, rural development and research
  • Silvestre Reyes (D-Texas), ranking member, Armed Services subcommittee on strategic forces
  • William Lacy Clay (D-Mo.), ranking member, Government Reform subcommittee on technology, information policy, intergovernmental relations and the census
  • Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Senior Whip
  • Gene Green (D-Texas), Senior Whip
  • Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.), Senior Whip
  • John Tanner (D-Tenn.), Senior Whip
  • Karen McCarthy (D-Mo.), Senior Whip
  • Joe Hoeffel (D-Pa.), Assistant Whip
  • Lois Capps (D-Calif.), Assistant Whip
  • Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), Assistant Whip
  • Chet Edwards (D-Texas)
  • Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.)
  • Chris Bell (D-Texas)

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