In 1970 the 30-year-old Clyburn made his first run at political office when he launched what would prove to be a failed bid for the South Carolina House of Representatives.
Despite the loss, the run raised Clyburn's profile, and in the wake of the race, South Carolina Governor John Carl West tapped him as an advisor.
In the nation's capital, the Democrat quickly exerted political clout and over the last two decades has assumed various leadership roles.
In 1999 he was elected Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, a post that no doubt helped him win a tight three-way race three years later for House Democratic Caucus Vice Chair.
However, members of the Bahá’í Faith in the Palmetto State rejected segregation, broke away from religious orthodoxy, and defied the odds, eventually becoming the state’s largest religious minority.
In 1992, Clyburn stepped back onto the campaign trail and won election to the U. House of Representatives, taking South Carolina's Sixth Congressional District.In 2005 he assumed the role of Chair of the Democratic Caucus.A year later, when his party regained majority control of the House, he was named House Majority Whip. Church in Charleston, South Carolina, on June 17, 2015, Clyburn became a national voice on the tragedy and the debate that soon swirled about the state's flying of the Confederate flag at its capitol.After two decades in state politics, Clyburn won his home state's Sixth Congressional District, making him the first black man to represent South Carolina in the U. Raised in a politically minded household, Clyburn was the eldest son of a fundamentalist minister, Enos Clyburn, and his beautician wife, Almeta—who were both engaged in an assortment of civic activities.Clyburn followed closely in his parents' footsteps, beginning with getting elected president of his NAACP youth chapter when he was just 12 years old.