The Democrats have regained a majority in the House of Representatives for the first time in nearly a decade. That means that come January, it’s likely that a Democrat will be third in line to the presidency as Speaker of the House.
Representative Nancy Pelosi is assumed to step back into that role. She served as House Speaker from 2007 through 2011, the first woman ever elected to that position. She has been the House Minority Leader for the past eight years.
But in 2016, Rep. Pelosi faced a challenge from Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio. At the time, Rep. Ryan had just been re-elected for his seventh term in the House. There were signs of divisiveness among the Democratic caucus about which direction the party should go moving forward. Rep. Ryan was among those stressing that the party needed to get back to talking about jobs and improving wages for the working class.
The challenge was unsuccessful, and Rep. Pelosi was re-elected to the Minority Leader spot with 134 votes. But Rep. Ryan garnered 63 votes, which was about a third of the caucus. As pointed out by the Washington Post, this was the most significant opposition Pelosi had ever faced since taking on a major leadership role within the party. It may also have inspired the more senior members of the Democratic party to reach out more to its more junior members. For example, they created “vice-ranking member” positions on certain House committees.
The question now is whether Rep. Tim Ryan will challenge her for the top spot in the House. The short answer, as of November 7, is: He hasn’t decided yet, or at the very least, he’s keeping it close to the vest.
We called the congressman’s communications office and spoke with a staff member. When we asked whether Rep. Ryan would run for Speaker of the House, the answer was, “You’ll have to ask him.”
Voting for a House Speaker is different than selecting a Minority Leader. The entire House of Representatives votes, not just the majority party. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the current Majority Leader, was expected to be the pick for the Republicans. If there are two candidates, then 218 votes are needed to win.
But if there is dissension among the parties, then the outcome becomes a little less clear. According to CNN, multiple Democratic candidates had promised voters they would not support Rep. Pelosi as the party leader or for House Speaker. Rep. McCarthy, despite his good relationship with President Trump and experience as second-in-command under outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan, also reportedly faces opposition from the more conservative members of the party in the Freedom Caucus.
Rep. Pelosi, for all of her years serving in Congress and place in history as the first and only woman elected to be House Speaker, is a controversial figure nationwide. A Harvard-Harris poll conducted nationwide October 26-28, of nearly 2,000 registered voters, looked at Pelosi’s popularity. 37 percent of respondents were Democrat, 32 percent were …read more
Source:: Heavy.com – Politics