Pelosi Hangs On To House Leadership Despite Wave Of Defectors

REUTERS/Larry Downing

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Phillip Stucky Political Reporter
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Former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi survived the Democratic leadership election Wednesday to remain House minority leader, according to The Associated Press.

Pelosi beat challenger Rep. Tim Ryan to retain her post as top Democrat in the House with 134 votes. Ryan was expected to fall short of the total to win the leadership position, but Pelosi staffers told BuzzFeed late Tuesday they anticipated only around a dozen Democratic lawmakers to vote against her.

One unnamed member of Congress told BuzzFeed that Pelosi wasn’t entirely aware of the anti-leadership sentiment in Congress, evidenced by the fact that 63 Democrats voted for Ryan.

“I think the anybody-but-Pelosi sentiment is stronger than she thinks it is,” the member said.

“I think a lot of people are unsure if we want the faces of the party to be Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi: liberals from New York and California. It was different with a Democratic president — he was the face of the party, but now they will be,” the Democrat said.

This isn’t the first time Pelosi misread an election. She came on cable news shows repeatedly during the course of the 2016 election to say that Republicans would lose control of the lower chamber of Congress, essentially granting her the speakership. Republicans held control of the House, maintained a majority in the Senate and won the presidency.

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