In a letter released Monday, 16 House Democrats vowed to oppose Nancy Pelosi in the upcoming speaker election, throwing her bid to reclaim the post into doubt.
“We believe more strongly than ever that the time has come for new leadership in our caucus,” the letter reads. “We are thankful to Leader Pelosi for her years of service to our Country and to our Caucus. . . . However, we also recognize that in this recent election, Democrats ran and won on a message of change. Our majority came on the backs of candidates who said they would support new leadership because voters in hard-won districts, and across the country, want to see real change in Washington. We promised to change the status quo, and we intend to deliver on that promise.”
The letter was signed by Democratic representatives Tim Ryan, Linda Sanchez, Jim Cooper, Bill Foster, Brian Higgins, Stephen Lynch, Seth Moulton, Ed Perlmutter, Kurt Schrader, Filemon Vela, and Kathleen Rice, as well as Representatives-elect Anthony Brindisi, Joe Cunningham, Ben McAdams, Max Rose, and Jeff Van Drew.
Notably, several Democratic members and incoming members of Congress who have vowed to oppose Pelosi’s speaker bid did not sign the letter, including Conor Lamb, Abigail Spanberger, and Jason Crow.
Pelosi has led her party for 15 years and was speaker of the House previously from 2007 to 2011. She has made clear that she has no intention of abandoning her bid and said she is “100 percent” confident she will win. She needs 218 votes to be elected speaker on January 3, and Democrats are currently projected to control 233 seats in the House.