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Pelosi steps aside as House Democratic leader, clearing the way for

washington House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who made history as the first woman to serve in the role, will not seek another term as Democratic leader, she said Thursday, ending two decades as head of the Democratic caucus. The party prepares to relinquish its majority to the Republicans.

Pelosi will continue to serve in the House after winning a 19th term in the past week midterm electionsPlaying a low-profile role when the next Congress convenes in January.

“Now we must move boldly into the future, grounded in the principles that have gotten us here and open to new possibilities for the future,” Pelosi said. “With great confidence in our caucus, I will not seek re-election for the Democratic leadership in the next Congress. For me, the time has come for a new generation to lead the Democratic Caucus.”

Pelosi begins her speech walking the path “from homemaker to House Speaker” Seeing the US Capitol for the first time As a 6 year old to work with presidents of both parties. Calling the Capitol “the temple of our democracy, of our Constitution, of our highest ideals”, he paid tribute to the Americans who served in Congress before him and the historic legislative acts of the House, including the abolition of slavery and the expansion of women’s rights. the right to vote.

“A new day is rising on the horizon, and I always look forward to the unfolding story of our country,” he said. “A story of light and love, of patriotism and progress, of the many coming together as one, and always an unfinished mission to make today’s dreams tomorrow’s reality.”

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi applauds lawmakers after speaking on the House floor in the Capitol, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.

Carolyn Caster/AP


Pelosi ended her remarks to thunderous applause from her Democratic colleagues, who embraced her as she departed the lecture. The White House said that President Biden spoke to Pelosi on Thursday morning and congratulated her on her tenure.

“When I think of Nancy Pelosi, I think of dignity,” the president said in a statement. “History will note that she is the most accomplished speaker of the House of Representatives in our history. There are countless examples of how she embodies the obligation of elected officials to uphold their oaths to God and country to ensure that that our democracy provides and remains a beacon.” World. Whatever she does, she sees a dignity in her actions and a dignity in the lives of the people of this country.

Pelosi’s decision to clear the way for a new generation of lawmakers to run the caucus ends months of speculation about her political future. It’s also after last month’s violent attack on her husband, Paul Pelosi, at their San Francisco home that the speaker told CNN she would step down. Pelosi herself was the goal Suspected attacker, but was in Washington at the time.

Joining Pelosi in stepping down from the Democratic leadership is Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the current majority leader and Pelosi’s longtime No. 2. Hoyer told his aides in a letter that he would remain in Congress but give up a leadership position. His decision clears the way for Democratic caucus chair Rep. Hakeem Jefferies of New York to ascend to party leader when Democratic members vote in a leadership election at the end of the month. Hoyer endorsed Jeffries to succeed Pelosi as Democratic leader, calling her a “skillful and capable leader”.

The No. 3 Democrat in the House, Rep. Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, praised Pelosi as a leader who made an “indelible mark” on Congress and the nation. He, too, offered his support to a new generation of Democratic candidates, including Jefferies, Rep. Katherine Clark of New York, and Rep. Pete Aguilar of California.

Clyburn said of Pelosi, “As a historic leader, she has risen to the challenges of guiding this body through the best of times and the worst.” “His steady hand, principled policies, and unmatched ability to build consensus among the most diverse caucus the country has ever known are hallmarks of his storied career.”

Pelosi, wearing a white suit, the color often worn by suffragettes, opened the House session ahead of her speech and was greeted with applause as she entered the House chamber. Dozens of Pelosi’s Democratic colleagues as well as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer gathered for her remarks. Republican Representative Joe Wilson of South Carolina ended brief remarks on the House floor before Pelosi’s speech by saying, “Godspeed, Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks on the House floor at the Capitol on Thursday, November 17, 2022, in Washington, DC.

Carolyn Caster/AP


A source familiar with the matter said it was unclear what decision Pelosi made on Thursday, and that she took home two versions of her speech Wednesday night. The speaker declined to answer questions about his plans when he reached the Capitol Thursday morning.

Since her election to Congress in 1987, Pelosi rose through the ranks of the House Democratic leadership, serving as minority whip – her election to that position made Pelosi the highest-ranking woman in congressional history – and then House Democratic leader, a role he’s held since 2003.

In 2007, when the Democrats won a majority, she made history as the first woman to be elected Speaker of the House. He has since served four non-consecutive terms as speaker, uniting the often fractious Democratic caucus, passing some of the most consequential legislation in recent history under the Obama and Biden administrations.

Mr. Biden paid tribute to Pelosi’s record of ushering Democratic priorities through the House, portraying her as a force in securing the support needed to carry out his party’s legislative agenda.

The President said, “With his leadership, you never worry about whether a bill will pass or not.” “If she says she has votes, she has votes. Every time.”

For Republicans, his unabashed pursuit of liberal priorities made him a convenient foil on the campaign trail, and GOP candidates made him a fixture of attack ads for years. She was one of the staunchest opponents of former President Donald Trump, overseeing both House impeachment proceedings against him. Their fractured relationship was memorably on display after Trump’s State of the Union address in 2020, after which Pelosi tore up a copy of his remarks.

And on Thursday, as he highlighted the legislative achievements of Bush, Obama and Mr. Biden, there was no mention of the 45th president.

In her remarks, Pelosi reflected on the changing demographics of House membership over more than three decades in Congress, highlighting the increase in women serving but noting that “we want more.”

“I have noticed that this body is more reflective of our great nation, our beautiful nation,” she said.

While Pelosi said in 2018 that she would limit her term as Democratic leader to four years, a pledge that appealed to enough members of her party to secure the speaker’s gavel once again, she would be considered a Republican. pushed to reconsider after an expected “red wave”. It did not happen.

The speaker told CNN on Sunday that his Democratic colleagues have asked him to “consider” caucus leadership elections set to begin at the end of the month, but added that any decision about doing so would be “rooted”. The wishes of my family and the wishes of my caucus.”

According to Politico, Mr Biden also asked Pelosi to stay in office, saying “I hope you stick around” after the California Democrat won her own bid.

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