Inside Nancy Pelosi's Fight To Reclaim The House Speaker's Gavel

Inside Nancy Pelosi's Fight To Reclaim The House Speaker's Gavel

Inside Nancy Pelosi's Fight To Reclaim The House Speaker's Gavel

The California Democrat faces tougher math in January, when she'll need 218 votes, the majority of the full House, to be elected speaker. "But I expect to have a powerful vote going forward". It's also possible that some of the people who voted against her on Wednesday could support her later on the floor.

"I came into Washington with an open mind, " Hayes said on MSNBC. "So I'm prepared to support Nancy Pelosi in caucus tomorrow when votes are cast".

Between now and January, Pelosi will be working the levers of power by doling out the many committee seat assignments, subcommittee chairmanships and other perks she is able to offer, or withhold, as incentives to win over supporters.

Democrats were poised to return their entire top leadership team, including Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland in the No. 2 spot as majority leader and Rep. Jim Clyburn of SC in the No. 3 spot as whip.

She lost fewer votes than she did during a leadership challenge two years ago, and fewer than retiring Republican Speaker Paul Ryan faced in his internal caucus election for the job.

Pelosi will need 218 votes to make it official when the House of Representatives votes on January 3.

"I said we need her now more than ever before", Lewis told TPM as he exited the meeting.

"It is about having a conversation, as a party, about what our future looks like and how our leadership can best reflect the House we have just won", the Salem lawmaker said.


Clark also wants to help elevate the newly elected women, many of whom she grew close to during the campaign. And she would have brought these perspectives, she said, to the progressive base.

Pelosi, for her part, appeared jubilant at a news conference on Capitol Hill as votes for her leadership were being tallied today.

In brief remarks to the press as votes were being tabulated, Pelosi said she wanted Congress "that's like America's town hall".

A rump group opposing Mrs. Pelosi's return to the speaker's position says turnover is needed. If Cox holds on to his small lead, Pelosi could lose 17 Democratic votes and still be elected speaker.

With Democrats expected to have 235 members, that means Pelosi could lose only 17 Democrats and still be elected speaker ― if every Republican votes against her and none of the Democrats now opposing her vote "present". Hoyer, the current minority whip, is running to become majority leader in the new Congress. Clyburn, the current assistant Democratic leader, is running to become majority whip. Wednesday's vote puts him in an even stronger position to take up leadership after Rep. Nancy Pelosi.

"Hakeem's election is helpful to Leader Pelosi, because it's the advancement, in a very substantial position, of someone who most people here view as a new leader and really a rising star", said Rep. Brian Higgins of NY, who signed a letter with 15 other Democrats suggesting they would not vote for Pelosi, but endorsed her last week after she pledged to focus on two of his top policy priorities.

Rep. Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., played down the significance of Wednesday's caucus vote and said the true fight for House speaker will occur in January.

"This November, voters sent a loud and clear message: They want Congress to get real results on health care, immigration, and infrastructure", the statement reads.

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