Exclusive: Sessions Not Running for Majority Whip, Seeks Reelection at NRCC

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"Pete Sessions and I have been in the trenches together for many years, and I knew two years ago that our party required his vision, skill and leadership to end the Democrats' monopoly on power in Washington and elect a new Majority that would listen to the people," Boehner said. "I am very grateful for Pete's tireless work as he has helped to guide House Republicans from the political wilderness to an historic victory for the American people."

In addition to running for reelection as NRCC chairman, Sessions will lead new member development for the freshman class of House Republicans in the 112th session of Congress.

The Texas lawmaker was just reelected to his eighth term in the House and is the second-ranking Republican in seniority on the Rules Committee, where he has served for the past 12 years.

"I look forward to leading our new Majority through an expanded policy leadership role that will enable me to shape and promote the Republican agenda among Members and across America," Sessions said.

If he is successful in his bid for reelection as chairman at the NRCC, Sessions would not only design his own policy initiatives, but would essentially be empowered to lead new members from both the political and policy sides in Congress.

"As a senior member of the Rules Committee -- which deals with every bill and amendment that comes to the floor -- Mr. Sessions will be in a unique position to assist new members with their legislative and policy initiatives, in addition to continuing to serve as a key voice on all matters at the leadership table," according to a GOP leadership aide familiar with the arrangement.

The dual leadership role is an attractive deal for Sessions, who Boehner credits as "the architect" of the Republican takeover of the House.

"Pete earned unprecedented support from the Republican Conference by transforming the NRCC into a member-driven organization. He raised the money, oversaw recruitment of the candidates, and focused a strong message for our Members and candidates to play offense," Boehner said. "As the architect for the new Republican Majority, Pete Sessions has my admiration and gratitude, and I look forward to his strong leadership in the years ahead."

Now that a Sessions/McCarthy battle for whip is out of the picture, the top leadership contest to watch is between Tea Party darling Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., and one of the most conservative Republicans in the House, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, for GOP conference chair -- the Republicans' fourth-ranking post in the House.

The GOP's leadership elections will likely be held Nov. 17, Republican aides said, one day before President Obama is scheduled to host a bipartisan meeting at the White House with House and Senate leadership on Nov. 18.

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