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Hakeem Jeffries Positions Himself For Long Career In Washington

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Hakeem Jeffries is only about four months into his freshman year in Congress but he's already positioning himself for a long career in Washington. NY1's Michael Scotto filed the following report.

If you're looking to knock Hakeem Jeffries off message, you won't get very far.

"There's a hip hop song, every day I'm hustling, and I kind of feel that way down here in Washington," Jeffries said. "In a positive manner, of course."

The freshman congressman from Brooklyn and a sliver of Queens is an ambitious work horse who always appears to have his eye on the prize.

"I'll be shuffling back and forth between budget and judiciary for the better part of the morning, making sure we time it correctly so that I'm able to ask questions in both situations," he said.

He's a big change from Congressman Ed Towns, who retired after holding the seat for 30 years.

On any given day, Jeffries is traveling through the Capitol, attending hearings on the Judiciary and Budget committees, two of the most prominent in the lower chamber.

For Jeffries, those two assignments allow him to serve as a counterweight to the Republican leadership and to talk up the President, whom he and his district overwhelmingly support.

"My job, I believe, is to help the administration of Barack Obama help us back at home," Jeffries said.

In his first four months, Jeffries has championed himself as a progressive, introducing legislation to help student loan recipients and voting against a bill Friday to ease the impact of automatic spending cuts to the FAA because it didn't stop cuts to programs that are impacting the poor.

In the months and years ahead, Jeffries says there's plenty to do.

"There's no shortage of the people's business down in Washington, D.C. and that's why the job is one that is a serious endeavor," he said.

A serious endeavor that is also very much on message.

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