Ryan speaks at the Netroots Nation annual conference for political progressives in New Orleans L
20 November, 2018, 06:18
Any major shake-up in the Democratic leadership now depends on whether a small group of incumbents and freshmen can muster the votes to keep top leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., from seizing the House speaker's gavel in January.
The opposition comes as Pelosi has marshaled a legion of supporters on and off Capitol Hill to make her case, but her opponents said Monday they are convinced it is time to select a new leader.
Those opposing Pelosi's candidacy say that this type of whip operation is exactly why they need new leadership, arguing that the new members who campaigned against her are now finding themselves pressured to cast a vote that could ultimately cost them reelection.
Fudge's office has not responded to a request for comment, but after Fudge met with Pelosi last week, it's possible the minority leader won her over.
Pelosi has led her party for 15 years and was speaker of the House previously from 2007 to 2011. Some House races remain undecided and the Democratic majority could grow slightly.
The letter includes signatures from all of the Democrats who'd been on the initial leaked list of signees except Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH), who is publicly weighing a bid against Pelosi. "Therefore, we are committed to voting for new leadership in both our caucus meeting and on the House floor".
"We also recognize that in this recent election, Democrats ran and won on a message of change", they wrote. We promised to change the status quo, and we intend to deliver on that promise. Our majority came on the backs of candidates who said that they would suport new leadership because voters in hard-won districts, and across the country, want to see real change in Washington. They say years of Republican ads portraying her as an out-of-touch liberal have made it hard for moderate Democrats to win elections in swing districts. Many bristle at dumping her at a time when President Donald Trump and the.MeToo movement have helped attract female candidates and voters to the party.
He said that on another network, Pelosi noted that "one thing her father taught her was how to count".
Of the letter's signees, five are incoming House freshmen or hope to be.
Democrats who signed the letter include 11 current lawmakers - Rice, Seth Moulton, Tim Ryan, Filemon Vela, Kurt Schraeder, Linda Sanchez, Ed Perlmutter, Stephen Lynch, Brian Higgins, Bill Foster and Jim Cooper - and four incoming ones: Anthony Brindisi, Joe Cunningham, Max Rose and Jeff Van Drew. Fudge has the support of several Democrats to challenge for Speaker. They also will vote on their nominee for speaker next year, with a vote by the full House - Democrats and Republicans - on that position likely to be held on January 3. And while Anthony Brindisi, who signed the letter, now leads New York Republican Rep. Claudia Tenney he has not officially been declared the victor in that contest yet.
Gottheimer was withholding supporting Pelosi pending the outcome of the talks.