After Pledging to Stay Neutral, Jim Clyburn Considers Endorsing Clinton for President

U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., is considering endorsing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for president, according to The Washington Post. (FILE/PAUL ZOELLER/STAFF)
U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., is considering endorsing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for president, according to The Washington Post. (FILE/PAUL ZOELLER/STAFF)

U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn previously said he wanted to stay neutral between the two remaining Democratic presidential contenders, but now he appears to be reconsidering.

The third-ranking House Democrat on Capitol Hill and arguably South Carolina’s most influential black lawmaker told The Post and Courier on Wednesday that he planned to make a decision “later this week” on entering the fray.

Clyburn would not say outright whether he was leaning toward endorsing Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. He hinted, however, it would have to be Clinton, given his pressure to endorse was coming mainly from his family members.

“I have a wife and three daughters, so you figure it out!” Clyburn said with a long laugh. “And two granddaughters!”

But Clyburn later said he didn’t know how his daughters planned to vote, further complicating anyone’s ability to predict his next course of action. He would only say, “They’re telling me I need to take a stand.”

On Wednesday afternoon, he told MSNBC he would not be making any announcement this week. The Washington Post first reported the possibility.

Clyburn is becoming something of an island in his Washington circles for not getting on the Clinton bandwagon. He is one of the last holdouts in House Democratic leadership to endorse Clinton, and also one of the last members of the Congressional Black Caucus to decline picking a side.

Virtually every member of the CBC has publicly endorsed Clinton, and on Thursday morning the CBC’s official political action committee will formally endorse the former Secretary of State, according to the PAC’s chairman, U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y. Meeks said “90 percent” of the PAC’s 20-member board voted to endorse Clinton, with the remaining members abstaining. Of the 20 board members, seven are sitting members of Congress.

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SOURCE: Emma Dumain 
The Post & Courier