WASHINGTON, Nov 17 – Nancy Pelosi, the pioneering Democrat who was the first woman speaker of the United States House of Representatives and oversaw two impeachments, announced her resignation on Thursday.
Republicans planned to install a speaker from their party who expected to stymie President Joe Biden’s legislative agenda. While Pelosi’s friends rapidly gathered on Representative Hakeem Jeffries as her likely replacement as the senior House Democrat. Her replacement will have to bring together a fractured House Democratic caucus split among centrists and an extremely loud left fringe.
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Pelosi made the declaration during a speech on the House floor, earning acclaim from Democrats as many Republicans chose not to attend. She stated that she does not wish to resign from Congress and shall continue to represent San Francisco as she has for the past 35 years.
Pelosi was criticized by conservatives for her involvement in the legislative agendas of two Democratic presidents through Congress. Under Biden, she helped pass President Barack Obama’s flagship 2010 healthcare bills and increased measures in infrastructure, climate funding, and gun laws. She also presided over the impeachment of Republican President Donald Trump by the House in 2019 and 2021.
Despite the midterm elections, Republicans secured a minor majority in the House for the next Congress and will swear in on Jan 3. They indicated preliminary support for Kevin McCarthy, who has had tense ties with Pelosi, to serve as speaker. McCarthy was not present during Pelosi’s remarks. Pelosi was second in line to the president, made a poignant address in which she called the House chamber “holy ground” and recalled attending the Capitol as a youngster when her father swore in as a representative.
She recalled working with three presidents: Republican George W. Bush, Democrat Barack Obama, and Democrat Joe Biden. She did not mention Trump, but she did make a reference to his supporters’ attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
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