- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 4, 2021

President Biden has nominated a daughter of House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, one of his key allies in Congress, to a seat on a federal commission aimed at addressing poverty in the southeastern U.S.

The president appointed Jennifer Clyburn Reed as federal co-chair of the Southeast Crescent Regional Commission, which was created in 2008 and received a large boost in federal funding in the current fiscal year.

Mr. Clyburn, a South Carolina Democrat whose endorsement is credited with helping Mr. Biden to win a crowded presidential primary in 2020, has often spoken of his daughter someday taking his place in Congress. Her nomination must be confirmed by the Senate.

The seven-state regional commission covers parts of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia and was created to address economic distress across the region. 

But the commission has been inactive, according to a recent report by the Congressional Research Service, because it lacked a federal co-chair to form a quorum and make decisions.

“It has received regular appropriations of $250,000 annually from FY2010 through FY2020, but it has not been able to form due to the absence of an appointed federal co-chair,” the CRS report stated. “However, for FY2021, the SCRC was appropriated a substantial increase of $1 million.”

Ms. Reed, who has worked as an educator, told a local newspaper earlier this year that she’s ready for a life in politics.

“That learning curve [for Congress] won’t be as much for me as it would be for someone else,” she said.

In March, Mr. Biden nominated Gayle Conelly Manchin, wife of Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, to the Appalachian Regional Commission. Mr. Manchin has repeatedly proven to be a crucial swing vote in the evenly divided Senate.

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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