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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Debbie Wasserman Schultz is new DNC chair



dws.jpgPresident Barack Obama has picked U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Westin as his choice for the new chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, a senior Democratic official confirms to Buzz. The president phoned the congresswoman a little after 5:30 p.m. with the news.

Wasserman Schultz will succeed Tim Kaine, a longtime Obama friend who announced today he is running for U.S. Senate. Wasserman Schultz, an early and passionate Hillary Clinton supporter in 2008, is a pro on TV, a strong fundraiser and happens to come from a swing state with 29 electoral votes. She is already vice chair of the DNC.

She not only has strong understanding of the Florida politics and policy, but as a leader of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's she has a lot of knowledge about districts across the country.

"The president didn't get just great advocate and great cheerleader but also a great strategist who's going to be a very valuable member of the team,'' said Miami lawyer Kirk Wagar, a top Obama and DNC fundraiser, sounding ecstatic about the pick.

Other contenders reportedly included Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin and former Ohio Gov. Strickland.

"In selecting Debbie to lead our party, President Obama noted her tenacity, her strength, her fighting spirit, and her ability to overcome adversity," Vice President Joe Biden said in an e-mail to DNC members. " President Obama expressed great admiration for her as a leader, and he was honored that she accepted this important challenge on behalf of the Democratic Party. No one should have any doubt that Debbie will work hard to strengthen our party and our country. I hope you will welcome her as President Obama's choice for the next Chair of the DNC."

Nancy Pelosi called her a champion fundraiser a great messenger on behalf of Democrats across the country:  “Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz came to the House with an already-impressive resume and then quickly distinguished herself among her peers.  She’s savvy, hard-working, and she brings a unique perspective – as a working mother and a cancer survivor – to the policy debate. "


[Last modified: Tuesday, April 5, 2011 7:01pm]


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