November 5th, 2010
01:20 PM ET
3 years ago

Pelosi is running for Minority Leader amid calls for her to step down

Washington (CNN) - Outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday she will run for minority leader, even as some moderate and conservative Democrats have said she should step aside. Pelosi made the announcement on Twitter: "Driven by the urgency of creating jobs & protecting #hcr, #wsr, Social Security & Medicare, I am running for Dem Leader."

She further explained her decision in a statement.

"Our work is far from finished. As a result of Tuesday's election, the role of Democrats in the 112th Congress will change, but our commitment to serving the American people will not," Pelosi said in a statement. "Many of our colleagues have called with their recommendations on how to continue our fight for the middle class, and have encouraged me to run for House Democratic Leader."

Moderate Democratic Rep. Dan Boren of Oklahoma was the latest to urge Pelosi to step aside and not run for House Minority Leader.

"I cannot in good conscience support Nancy Pelosi as our leader," Boren told CNN in a telephone interview, "I intend to support a more conservative Democrat, a Democratic alternative."

"I think most people in the Democratic caucus are giving her room to make the room to retire, to leave gracefully. But, you know, I think it is important to see over the next 24-48 hours if we will see an alternative emerge," Boren said.

Boren's public pressure for Pelosi to go follows similar comments from North Carolina's Democratic Rep Heath Schuler and Utah's Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson who have also said they would prefer a new, more centrist Democratic leader.

"I think based on the outcome of this election, we should all acknowledge what the American people said, and they are looking for change. And I think when you as a political party suffer losses of historic proportions, it makes sense to change things up," Matheson told CNN in a telephone interview." "Therefore I don't think she should be running for leader."

Still, after Tuesday's losses, moderate Democrats are now a very small part of the Democratic caucus. The bigger question, according to multiple Democratic sources, is what Pelosi's fellow progressives want her to do.

Americans United for Change, a progressive political organization, sent an email notice to its members Friday morning urging Pelosi to stay.

The notice asks people to send a personal note to Speaker Pelosi.

"Make sure she knows that we will support her," said the email.

"If she runs, she will win," said one senior Democratic source.

Still, while Pelosi's tireless fundraising has built reservoir of support among Democratic lawmakers, several Democratic sources said there are a number of progressive Democrats who do not want her to run.

Meanwhile, Kentucky Democratic Rep. John Yarmuth, who had been a staunch supporter of Pelosi's, told a television station in his home state he wants Pelosi to step down as Democratic leader.

"I know that there is some thought that Nancy Pelosi may stay around," Yarmuth said Thursday, "As good a leader as she has been, I don't think she's the right leader to take us


Filed under: Nancy Pelosi
soundoff (289 Responses)
  1. JRR

    Dutch; There certainly were a lot of ignorant and bigoted people that took over sixty seats away from you genius democrats. Even if we are all ignorant, where does the bigoted part come in? Personally, I would like to see Pelosi stay in charge of you brilliant demos. In 2012, us stupid people will have 75% of the House and probably 60 % of the Senate.
    You go out and campaign and donate to the cause. We appreciate the fine job this election.

    November 5, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  2. Chas/Houston

    In spite of what conservatives would believe, Bill Clinton was an exceptional leader. He represented all of the working class well and did not lose his repsect for the less fortunate. The extremes of conservatives and liberasl are narrow focused. This is about all of us and that was the failure of this congress. I have not lost sight that the hard core conservatives were selfish as well. Governing from a centrist point appears to have worked well. Extreme positions only offfer all or nothing alternatives.

    November 5, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  3. susie

    she has done a excellent job and she cares about the american people

    November 5, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  4. I HATE PELOSI

    What a freaking witch,somebody give her the Wizard of Oz treatment!!!!

    November 5, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  5. VANewsMan

    Does she not get it? The Republican attack ads just write themselves: "Here's Pelosi, waiting in the wings to take over again. Vote Republican, or else!" She was such a lightening rod in this campaign. People don't like her. She seems to be clueless about how people perceive her. Even many in her own party don't seem to like her.

    November 5, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  6. toml

    This is good for the GOP, especially in 2012

    November 5, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  7. Ken, AZ

    Nancy Pelosi is the leader Democrats need in the congress. The primary reason Dems took a shellacking on Nov. 2 is because too many of them did not stand up for their principles. They folded to try to appease those on the right. If the moderate and conservative democrats want someone more conservative as their leader, they should switch parties. Perhaps they would be more comfortable as republicans.

    November 5, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    Im no fan of her but I respect her. She always got the job done and pushed the Demo's agenda through everytime. She did what she was told to do, and now she is taking the fall for it LOL. Gotta love politics.

    November 5, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  9. Edwin

    Monster Zero: you are half right. Congressional approval IS extremely low. But you forgot to mention that approval of teh republicans in congress is actually LOWER than approval for the democrats. Pelosi's low approval is partly based on the fact that many Americans think Congress is too far to the center, not far enough left.

    But the real reason for the low approval is that we are in a terrible economic slump. Congress and Obama avoided a Depression, but the economy is still bad. So people are unhappy with Congress, because it didn't magically fix everything.

    November 5, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  10. Amy, FL

    Blue dogs can go out of the party today if they want. I don't understand what are they doing in the democratic party anyway. Go to the tea party!
    Nancy has guts, she is a fighter, I love this woman!

    November 5, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    She should resign and let someone else take over, with all due respect I am sure you have done a great job, but eventhough the GOP expended a lot to make you a villain, you have not been able to shake it off. A good leader should be able to.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  12. Jason

    Maybe she should stay on and get another leadership position. That will help the Republicans pick up more seats in 2 years and help us win the presidency back. This woman is a "B" and cares nothing for the country. She has a left of liberal agenda and will shove it down your throat.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  13. John R

    The one thing she said that sums up her career as a politician was on health care reform:
    "....we have to pass so we can find out what is in it."
    Yep, pretty much sums up the whole democratic party. They are passing bills and spending our money so fast, they don't even know what they are doing!

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  14. Velvet

    Best news I've heard all day!
    I've enjoyed watching the Dem party eat their due to her leadership. Looking forward to 2 more years of the entertainment.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  15. Andrew H.

    There's only one reason that Pelosi want to be the Dem leader. To stay in the spotlight and feed her huge ego.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  16. Js spevacek

    Run Nancy Run. Just as fast and as far as you can. Does not getting your butts handed to you on Tuesday enough to open your stupid worthless eyes. You are one of the biggest failures ever in politics. Even your own party does not want you.
    Do you need to be in the spotlight so bad that you do not realize you are bad for this country.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  17. MAT

    Im all for it. Ill just pop some popcorn and wahtch the Dem party implode. "Elections have consequences and we one." "They can come along for the ride,but they have to sit in the back of the bus." "Punish your enemies and reward your friends." Pathetic. Its not that they dont hear, they refuse to listen.

    November 5, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  18. Jeff

    @ S. in California. I disagree. GUTS is knowing when your time is up, recognizing that you are doing more harm than good, and stepping aside to let someone else take the lead. It's a critical part of leadership that many leaders lack, knowing when to stop leading.

    November 5, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  19. Gale

    Hey Dutch. If she is so wonderful, why did the Democrats lose so many seats? I have never know in my entire life, anyone as arrogant, demanding, and totally oblivious to the will of the people as this woman. Why does she want it so bad , will she get to keep flying on the big plane? Politicians of her ilk are very much hurting the President. If she wasn't so hated, he could probably get a lot more of his policies accepted. She's a detriment to to to the whole Democratic Party.

    November 5, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  20. Chirs in PA

    This woman is like a bad penny!!

    November 5, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  21. RB

    As a democrat, I would like to see new leadership. She did well, but let's get some fresh blood in there.

    November 5, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  22. Velvet

    Best news I've heard all day!
    I've enjoyed watching the dem party eat their own due to her leadership. Looking forward to 2 more years of the entertainment.

    November 5, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  23. Yes We Can - Vote Them Out

    The Republicans should be cheering her on. She represents everything that is wrong with Washington. It's not just the Democrats or Republicans that get the politician in office anymore, it's the Independent voter. Keep her in and in 2012, Obama will definitely be out.

    November 5, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  24. Edwin

    Dutch: I disagree. Purist attitudes should have no place in American politics. Yes, the GOP plays that game, but democrats are supposed to be better than that. We accept Blue Dogs because we want a robust party and want to represent a large swatch of people. Idealist parties, who push moderates out, become marginalized and disappear.

    They may be a thorn in the side of the progressives, but they are 100% better than the party of NO (as exemplified by Mitch McConnell, who said his priority is not to get America on track but to make sure Obama is a one term president).

    November 5, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  25. d-bo419

    Perhaps she wants to keep her A-Rated insurance. They probably cover botox!!!

    November 5, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
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