House Democrats pick Nancy Pelosi to lead them


Since then, Pelosi, who served as speaker from 2007 to 2011, has shored up support from members-elect who had previously called for new leadership, like Connecticut's Jahana Hayes.

Those who attempted to oust Pelosi said they always knew the internal caucus election would fall in the former speaker's favor. They have pledged to vote against her and say she doesn't have enough support to win the floor vote, even as some of their members have reversed course to say they're open to voting for her.

- Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of NY is running for caucus chair against veteran Rep. Barbara Lee of California; they are both prominent members of the Black Caucus.

Pelosi crushed an intra-Democrat revolt against her bid to retake the Speaker's gavel next year led by Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH) after a 2015 letter from Fudge backing a disgraced former Cleveland judge who was convicted of brutally beating his wife resurfaced in the wake of the man's alleged murder of her. One more newly-elected Democrat, Gil Cisneros of California, announced Monday he was adding his name to those vowing to vote for new leadership. Tim Ryan (Ohio), Seth Moulton (Mass.) and Kathleen Rice (N.Y.) ― met privately with Pelosi on Wednesday afternoon, and there's some talk that a key number of the anti-Pelosi Democrats would support her if she promised to make this her last term.

Pelosi's political power will be put to the test as Democrats vote for House speaker; Democratic strategist Raul Alvillar breaks it down.

Second, there is no apparent successor other than Pelosi's top two lieutenants.

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Moulton has emerged as the ringleader in a rebellion of 16 members of Congress looking to prevent Pelosi from becoming speaker, arguing the House needs a fresh leader. Tim Ryan of OH and Kathleen Rice of NY - met with Pelosi on Wednesday and asked her to produce "a meaningful plan for a leadership transition" to "allow a new generation of leadership to step forward".

Pelosi and her supporters think that winning back the House - and the fact that she has no clear successor - should be enough to pave her path back to the speaker's office.

If nobody is nominated to challenge Pelosi, there will be a motion to expedite the process with a unanimous consent voice vote, which would mean that there wouldn't be a recorded vote tally. "Now, we have to keep the majority", he said.

Still, the big question is whether or not Pelosi can get to 218 votes in January.

Some are among about a dozen freshmen who had said they want new leadership, but others didn't sign the letter, aides said. And Brindisi said there are things they can agree on. In a statement early Monday morning, they said, "our rules proposal isn't about changing leadership; it's about changing a system that stymies the will of the commonsense majority".

But Pelosi's ability to stand unopposed Wednesday, despite the threats from within and reams of attack ads against her, shows the staying power of her brand of machine politics. That forced some candidates to repudiate Pelosi - and she wasn't even Speaker. The bottom line is this: We need real rules reform to get bipartisan legislation heard - not just more committees to study the problem.