Buchwalter is seen as a potential replacement for the outgoing Frank Underwood as House Majority Whip. His main opponents in the race are Howard Webb, and later Jackie Sharp after she gains funding from Ted Havemeyer. In order to prevent Sharp succeeding, he and Webb attempt to reconcile their differences. He eventually agrees to drop out of the race and support Webb in exchange for the position of Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee as he could only offer Webb an undesirable position on the Select Committee on Ethics.
Having dropped out, he confides in Jackie Sharp that he will support her instead of Webb, but only if she helps him make Ted Havemeyer 'politically dead'. He doesn't see this as revenge, simply 'equity' on the twelve years he could have served in the United States Senate. Jackie agrees, divulging details of Havemeyers affair and illegitimate daughter Emily to Buchwalter.