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The Sequim Democrat — one of three legislators who represent the 24th District, which covers Clallam and Jefferson counties and part of Grays Harbor County — was re-elected to his post on the House Democrats’ core leadership team at a caucus reorganization meeting in Olympia on Friday.
He will serve in the post during the 2013 session of the state Legislature, which begins Jan. 14.
Van De Wege was first elected to the position in 2010 after previously serving as both deputy majority whip and assistant majority whip.
“The entire leadership team is ready to get to work, and I’m grateful for the vote of confidence from my colleagues,” Van De Wege said.
Others representing the 24th District are fellow Sequim Democrat Steve Tharinger and state Sen. Jim Hargrove, a Democrat from Hoquiam.
The district has been represented within House Democratic leadership for nearly two decades. Former state Rep. Lynn Kessler served 12 years as house majority leader until her retirement in 2010.
The majority whip is responsible for much of the organizational work of the House, including member attendance, vote tallying and keeping new legislators informed about process and procedure.
“My district is one of the largest geographically but is made up almost entirely of rural communities,” Van De Wege said.
“It’s important these communities have an equal voice within House leadership alongside the more densely populated urban areas.
“I’m proud to continue to be that voice.”