Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the Democratic Party in the US House of Representatives, has said that she will not run for re-election. This is because Republicans just barely took back control of the chamber.
Pelosi, who is 82 years old, was the first woman to be speaker of the US House of Representatives in 2007. She has been the most powerful Democrat for almost 20 years. She said on Thursday that she would stay in Congress to represent her California constituents, but she is ready to pass the torch of leadership to younger people.
Less than a month ago, an intruder attacked her husband at the couple’s home in San Francisco. The US government says the attack was political.
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In a speech on the House floor, Pelosi said, “I have a lot of faith in our caucus, and I will not run for re-election as the leader of the Democrats in the next Congress.” “I think it’s time for a new generation to lead the Democratic caucus, which I respect so much, and I’m glad that so many people are ready to take on this huge responsibility.”
At the end of the month, Democrats will choose who will lead them in the new Congress, which will meet early next year. Most people think that Hakeem Jeffries, a 52-year-old New York representative and chairman of the House Democratic Conference, is the most likely person to replace Pelosi.
Pelosi, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, and Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, the top three Democrats in the House, are all in their 80s.
In her speech on Tuesday, Pelosi warned about the future of US democracy. She pointed to the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021, by former President Donald Trump supporters who wanted to stop President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory from being certified.
“American democracy is majestic, but it is fragile,” she said. “Many of us here have witnessed this fragility firsthand – tragically in this chamber. And so democracy must be forever defended from forces that wish it harm.”
Pelosi has been a member of the House of Representatives since 1987. She is the daughter of a former US congressman and mayor of Baltimore.
People often say that the outgoing House speaker was a good lawmaker who kept the Democratic caucus together even though its members had very different ideas.
During her two terms as speaker, from 2007 to 2011 and from 2019 until the end of the year, she passed essential laws, such as the Affordable Care Act, which was put in place by former President Barack Obama to change the way health care is paid for.
She has also been criticized by the left for not pushing for more progressive laws and for not supporting impeaching former President George W. Bush for the invasion of Iraq and torture of prisoners after the 9/11 attacks.
Over the years, Republicans have made Pelosi a symbol of everything they don’t like about Democrats. She is a member of the so-called “coastal elite” and supports higher taxes and more government spending, which are things Republicans don’t like.
“Firing Nancy Pelosi” became a rallying cry for Republicans before the midterm elections. Even though the Republicans didn’t do well in the election and didn’t win the Senate, they were just able to win back the House, making sure that Pelosi wouldn’t be the speaker for another term.
Even though the president is mainly in charge of US foreign policy, Pelosi has been in the international spotlight for decades.
China was upset with her earlier this year when she went to Taiwan. She also ensured that Ukraine kept getting US aid after Russia invaded, and in May, she went to Kyiv to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The outgoing speaker is a strong supporter of Israel. “If this Capitol crumbled to the ground, the one thing that would remain would be our commitment to our aid – I don’t even call it our aid – our cooperation with Israel. That’s fundamental to who we are,” she said in 2018.
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