House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) formally entered her bid to seek another two years as speaker of the House after it appears the Democratic Party will retain its majority in the lower congressional body.
“Our vision for the next two years must be built on the success of Democratic House Majority in the 116th Congress, and to harness the extraordinary visions, values, and vibrancy of our Caucus to secure the progress that the American people deserve,” Pelosi wrote to her members (pdf) on Friday.
She added, “In that spirit, I am writing to request your support to be re-elected as Speaker. I do so with utmost respect for the diverse viewpoints in our Democratic Caucus, the gravity of this role, and the urgency of the challenges ahead. I also do so with the great joy and appreciation to so many of you who have already offered your support.”
If she is reelected as speaker, Pelosi would be likely the most powerful woman in Washington.
Pelosi said that if she is reelected, she will “work closely” with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris, who she said she believed would win the White House.
It’s also likely that Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) will try to keep his role as House majority leader and Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) is likely to attempt to keep his role as the No. 3 Democrat in the House as majority whip.
On Tuesday, Pelosi was asked about whether she thinks there will be any Democrats who will vote against her during her leadership bid.
“That’s the least important question you could ask today,” Pelosi told Politico. “The fate of our nation, the soul of our nation, is at stake in this election.”
Pelosi added, “One of these days I’ll let you know what my plans are, when it’s appropriate and it matters. It doesn’t matter right now.”
With a smaller House majority, Democrats are going to have a slimmer margin of error to pass legislation as some Democratic lawmakers may defect and join the Republican side. GOP House members typically vote in lockstep against Democratic bills.
“I think that the Democratic party needs to clearly push that we are not supportive of ideas like socialism or defunding the police or anti-Semitism,” said Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.), a co-chair of the House’s centrist Blue Dog Coalition, according to The Associated Press.
Murphy told AP that the House leadership team was putting “lipstick on a pig” by praising the overall election outcome as a success.
“This playing footsies with socialism is not going to win over most of America,” she added. “There’s no amount of lipstick that can cover up the fact that these far left ideas are costing us races.”