Wow, the Democrats have announced their new House leadership positions and it's almost a clean sweep for Portland politicians. Voting to keep Dave Hunt (who's from Gladstone) as the leader of the House Democrats, the caucus announced Wednesday evening that Tina Kotek of North/Northeast Portland will be the new whip, Tobias Read of Beaverton will be the deputy whip, Jules Bailey of Southeast Portland and Phil Barnhart of Eugene will be assistant policy leaders and Jefferson Smith of East Portland and Val Hoyle of Junction City/West Eugene will be assistant political leaders.

Both Bailey and Smith are relative newcomers to the Salem, having been elected in 2008, but they're rather shining stars. Smith got the honor of opening for Obama when he was in town last month and Bailey, well, you know how I feel about him.