House Democrats tapped Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday as the party’s nominee for speaker — but the political powerhouse is still fighting to lock down enough support to secure the gavel in January’s floor vote as some Democrats call for new leadership.
Pelosi, who faced no Democratic challenger, easily won her party’s nomination during the closed-door House Democratic Caucus leadership elections at the Capitol. While intra-party tensions did not appear to be on display in Wednesday’s meeting, 32 House Democrats did vote against her.
The California Democrat now faces a final floor vote with the entire House of Representatives on Jan. 3, when she’ll have to scrounge for additional support. While 203 Democrats voted for her Wednesday, it takes 218 votes to clinch the speakership with all members voting. Some who opposed her Wednesday could still flip to support her on the floor.
Democrats on Wednesday also elected Maryland Rep. Steny Hoyer for majority leader and South Carolina Rep. Jim Clyburn for majority whip. New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries was elected as Democratic caucus chairman, after running against fellow Congressional Black Caucus member Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif.
Pelosi, speaking to reporters after the vote, expressed confidence that she will win the speakership in January, saying, “I think we’re in pretty good shape.” – READ MORE