jim mcgovern

Meet Nancy Pelosi's New Floor Director, Keith Stern

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Keith Stern sat at a table in the Rayburn room outside Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s office eager to start as director of floor legislative operations for the California Democrat.  

It was Oct. 9, his last day as chief of staff for Massachusetts Rep. Jim McGovern, the second highest-ranking Democrat on the Rules Committee. He is replacing 28-year veteran Jerry Hartz, who left Pelosi's office in September for the nonprofit National Democratic Institute. It was fitting that as Stern sat with CQ Roll Call to discuss his career on Capitol Hill, in which strategizing has played a significant role, a bipartisan majority of House members were executing a rarely successful procedure, a discharge petition, to force a future vote on the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank — illustrating that with the right strategy, the patience to implement it and a strong knowledge of the rules, the minority can be effective.