Reps. Howard Berman, left, and Brad Sherman at a candidates forum early this year.

Reps. Howard Berman, left, and Brad Sherman at a candidates forum early this year. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times / September 5, 2012)

It's always nice when you can get others to make your points for you, and Rep. Howard Berman has found some help among Washington insider organizations in his election battle with fellow Democratic Rep. Brad Sherman.

Foreign Policy magazine's website has listed Berman among the 50 most influential Democrats in international affairs.  At No. 23, Berman ranked below Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) but ahead of MSNBC personality Rachel Maddow and California's senior senator, Dianne Feinstein.

Berman, the senior Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, is competing with Sherman for the same San Fernando Valley congressional district seat this year, thanks to the state's redrawing of political maps and its new "top two" primary elections system, which allows members of the same party to advance to the general election.

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-- Jean Merl, Los Angeles Times