U.S.: Nancy Pelosi to step down from party leadership

Mike Wagenheim

Senior U.S. Correspondent, i24NEWS

3 min read
U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi speaks in Yerevan, Armenia.
AP Photo/Stepan PoghosyanU.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi speaks in Yerevan, Armenia.

'I will not seek reelection to Democratic leadership in the next Congress'

Democrat Nancy Pelosi, the trailblazing first female speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, said Thursday that she will step down from the party leadership when Republicans take control of the chamber in January.

"For me, the hour has come for a new generation to lead the Democratic caucus that I so deeply respect," said the 82-year-old Pelosi, who first became speaker in 2007 and later presided over both impeachments of Donald Trump.

"I will not seek reelection to Democratic leadership in the next Congress," Pelosi told lawmakers in a speech on the House floor.

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With congressional control now split and Pelosi unseated as leader in the House, the Californian was expected to make a tough choice. 

Pelosi, who was elected to Congress in 1987, had previously indicated her time as a lawmaker might be up. 

Currently second in the line of succession to President Joe Biden, Pelosi said last week her final decision - should Democrats lose the House - would be influenced by the brutal attack on her elderly husband in the run up to the November 8 midterms.

Paul Pelosi, who is also 82, was left hospitalized with serious injuries after an intruder - possibly looking for the speaker - broke into their San Francisco home and attacked him with a hammer.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer also announced on Thursday that he would not run for leadership again, concurring with Pelosi about the need for fresh blood at the helm of the party, according to i24NEWS Senior U.S. Correspondent Mike Wagenheim.

"Coupled together, it seemingly clears a path for Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York to ascend to the top spot among House Democrats," he noted. 

The 52-year-old chair of the House Democratic Caucus has been a staunch supporter of Israel, pushing back hard against criticism of the Jewish state from within his party's more progressive ranks.

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