Even before his election Tuesday to one of three unsalaried, non-voting positions to lobby Congress for D.C. statehood, Jesse L. Jackson had privately begun outlining a strategy that would give him the lead role in promoting statehood throughout the country.

Yesterday, Democrats Charles J. Moreland and Florence Pendleton, the two other statehood lobbyists, bridled at Jackson's proposal and indicated they intend to assume a far more visible role for themselves.

"I do not see myself as an underling to Jesse," said Moreland, who won election to lobby the House for statehood. "The people have elected me to represent them in the House. I think protocol demands that Jesse understand that."

Pendleton, told of Jackson's plan yesterday, said, "People are different and their approaches may be different, but the objective should be the same."

Jackson, who won election to one of two Senate lobbying posts, met with Mayor-Elect Sharon Pratt Dixon election night to discuss his statehood strategy. He previously held preliminary talks with Democrat Eleanor Holmes Norton, who won election to the D.C. delegate seat.

The meetings were an attempt by Jackson to get a running start in what is expected to be a protracted and difficult battle to persuade Congress to aprove legislation making the District the 51st state.

Under Jackson's proposal, Pendleton, who was elected to the other Senate lobbying post, would be responsible for lobbying Congress, while Moreland, the House lobbyist, would coordinate the local grass-roots campaign.

Jackson, a television talk show host and two-time Democratic presidential contender, meanwhile, would travel extensively, campaigning for statehood.

"I think the 7 million votes I got in 1988 gives us entree around the country," Jackson said in a recent interview.

Moreland, who has worked for statehood for 12 years, said he plans to focus his lobbying efforts in the House, not in the streets.

"I've heard that {Jackson} plan outlined," Moreland said. "I don't think Jesse can divide the responsibilities like that."

The budding dispute illustrates a flaw in the statehood offices, which the D.C. Council reluctantly created last March. The council provided no money or authority for the non-voting posts, and it vaguely outlined the duties, leaving each officeholder, as Pendleton said, to "go any way we wish."

Moreland said his timetable for achieving statehood, which he hopes to bring about before his two-year term expires, also may differ from Jackson's, whose term expires in six years.

Pendleton said she intends to meet with city officials and statehood advocates, including Jackson, to formulate a plan.

Jackson, told of the differing tactical views, sought to minimize the dispute.

"There is no conflict," he said. "Our role is on the Senate side. We must all work together."

Despite his colleagues' quest for equal standing, Jackson is widely viewed as the leading player in efforts to heighten public awareness of statehood, especially in the District where many residents still are unclear about its potential impact on their daily lives.

Indeed, a number of voters interviewed at the polls this week said they had no concept of the statehood offices and acknowledged they voted in those races only because of Jackson. Others, who questioned the offices' purpose and meaning, said they didn't cast ballots.

"That's meaningless anyway. You know it and I know it," said one Ward 6 resident who asked not to be identified.

The effort to generate public interest in other states is likely to be even more arduous. There again, Jackson is the key. He enjoys the national spotlight, brightened by the recent debut of his own talk show, televised in 135 cities each week.

"It will allow me to travel less and reach more people," he said.

Jackson also can tap his experienced National Rainbow Coalition network to carry out his general plan, which he said includes meetings soon with key Senate supporters to "form a bipartisan team to lobby for statehood."