The House Speaker, who has led the Democrats for the past 20 years, announced on Thursday that she will step down from her position as party leader . This marks the end of a historic tenure as the most powerful woman in American history and opens the door for a new generation of up-and-coming lawmakers to advance into leadership positions.
“I will not seek reelection to Democratic leadership in the next Congress,” Pelosi said to a full chamber silent as members took in her decision. Pelosi said it was time for a “new generation” of leaders.
The first female speaker, whose legislative skills have advanced her party’s agenda under four presidents, had planned to step down after this term when she returned the top gavel in 2018. However, she has stated that the violent attack her husband Paul suffered last month made her decision more difficult.
As she leads the caucus through challenging legislative issues like government financing in the final two months of Democratic dominance, Pelosi will continue to serve in the House, at least for the time being. She is also anticipated to serve for at least a portion of the 118th Congress in order to exert the greatest amount of pressure on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who will need to control a very slim majority once the new year begins.
In her speech, Pelosi mentions Bush, Obama, and Biden in her leadership farewell speech but avoids Trump. “I have enjoyed working with three presidents, achieving historic investments in clean energy with President George Bush, transformative healthcare reform with President Barack Obama, and forging the future, from infrastructure to healthcare to climate action, with President Joe Biden,” Pelosi said.
Remember this photo? This is exactly why Nancy Pelosi is absolute boss. In a room of men who try to bring her down, she not only stands her ground, but she stands up to them. Nancy is a true leader. pic.twitter.com/0H5wqMCeMX
— Victor Shi (@Victorshi2020) November 17, 2022
Biden wrote “When I think of Nancy Pelosi, I think of dignity.” “History will note she is the most consequential Speaker of the House of Representatives in our history.”
Clyburn indicates he will stand down and give the House Democrats a new leadership team.
After Nancy Pelosi decided to stand down as speaker, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn released a statement clearing the way for a new leadership group to head House Democrats.
Even though they won’t vote until November 30, House Democrats are poised to approve Hakeem Jeffries of New York as Pelosi’s replacement. As the first Black House Democratic leader, Jeffries, 52, would symbolize the party’s broad voter base as well as usher in a new era of leadership. Two other members of the party’s leadership are in their 80s, including Pelosi, the first woman to occupy the position of speaker. Pelosi is 82 years old.
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