November 8, 2020

Nancy Pelosi Announces Run for Speaker

  • The Hill

By: Amy Jo Underwood

In Brief: 

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced that she is formally running for reelection for Speaker of the House. In her letters to Democrat colleagues, she asked for their support and mentioned the presence of a strong Democrat majority House, despite no evidence to a strong majority at the time. Pelosi referred to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as “president-elect” and “vice-president-elect,” although Biden had not yet reached the required amount of electoral votes. 

The Background:

Nancy Pelosi formally announced her campaign for Speaker of the House on Thursday, and sent a letter to each Democratic member of the House of Representatives. According to Politico, she asked her Democrat colleagues for their support, and declared that she would work closely with “President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice-President-Elect Kamala Harris.” As of the writing of the letters, the race had not been called. 

Additionally, Pelosi wrote, “American people elected Democrats up and down the ballot with a resounding and remarkable mandate” — although the Democrat party had not picked up new seats, and lost a majority in New Hampshire. 

According to Roll Call, Speaker Pelosi agreed in 2018 to limit herself to two more terms. If she keeps her agreement, and is selected as speaker in 2020, she will need to hand over her position in 2022.  House Democrats will begin the process of selecting leaders for their caucus on November 18th. According to Politico, Pelosi has refused to address the subject of term limits, despite her promise in 2018, saying, “One of these days I’ll let you know what my plans are, when it’s appropriate and it matters. It doesn’t matter right now.”

According to the Daily Wire, Democrats are struggling to find a unified message, with progressives and moderates choosing different messaging for their platform. Moderates urge progressives to avoid phrases such as “defund the police,” and “socialism,” while progressives like Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) say that the avoidance of terms is to avoid addressing the need for true reform.  According to The Hill, some Democrats are proposing that House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) serve as the next Speaker. 

Notable Quotes:

“...Democrats have thus far underperformed in the House, a realization that has caused infighting within the Democratic caucus about allowing the left-wing flank of the party to dominate the narrative with radical messaging.” - Daily Wire

 

Amy Jo Underwood writes from Alabama

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