WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, was today re-elected as the Senate’s second-highest ranking Democrat, the Assistant Democratic Leader, for the 114th Congress. He was reelected along with Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, Democratic Caucus Vice Chairman Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Democratic Conference Secretary Patty Murray, D-Wash. This will be Durbin’s sixth term as Assistant Leader.
“I’m honored to have the trust of my colleagues in the Democratic Caucus,” said Durbin. “While our caucus will be the minority in the Senate next year, our work on behalf of all Americans will never falter. We can, and we must, come together to meet America’s biggest challenges and I will continue to work with President Obama and the leaders of both parties to do that.”
Durbin will continue his role as the lead Senate Democrat in the day-to-day action on the Senate floor. The Assistant Democratic Leader — also known as the Democratic Whip — is responsible for counting votes and monitoring legislation for the caucus on the Senate floor.
Only four other Illinoisans have served as leaders for their parties in the Senate. Shelby Moore Cullom served as Republican Conference Chairman from 1911-1913; J. Hamilton Lewis became the first Democratic Whip of the Senate in 1913, and was again elected Whip in 1931; Scott Wike Lucas served as Democratic Whip from 1947 to 1949 and Majority Leader from 1949 to 1951; and Everett McKinley Dirksen was elected Republican Whip in 1957 and Minority Leader in 1959, a position he held for 10 years.
Earlier this month, Durbin was re-elected for a fourth term in the Senate.