In 2007, the Democrat became the first woman to head the US House of Representatives. Now 82-year-old Nancy Pelosi is giving up all management positions.
WASHINGTON ap/afp |It’s the end of an era: US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi gives in after the midterm elections leadership of the Democratic Party in the Congress Chamber. In an emotional speech to lawmakers in Washington on Thursday, the 82-year-old said the time had come for “a new generation” to lead the Democratic Party. She will therefore not stand for re-election for a leadership position, but will remain MPs.
In her speech, Pelosi reviewed her political career, from her first visit to the Capitol with her father, who was also a congressman, to her working as chair with a slew of presidents. “Every day I stand in awe of the sublime wonder that is American democracy,” she said.
Many Democratic members of parliament followed her short-term appearance in the plenary session, including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. When Pelosi finished, they surrounded, hugged and kissed their colleagues. A number of Republicans were also present, including newly elected representatives. Kevin McCarthy, leader of the Republican faction in the House of Representatives, did not show up, later telling reporters that he was “unfortunately busy”. McCarthy wants to succeed Pelosi in the new Congress starting in January.
Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, on the other hand, recognized the merits of the outgoing chairmen of the grand chamber of Congress. While they have often and vehemently at odds over the years, McConnell wrote that he has witnessed firsthand the depth and intensity of their commitment to public service. “There is no doubt that the impact of Speaker Pelosi’s important and seminal career will long linger.”
The first woman Speaker of the House of Representatives
President Joe Biden praised Pelosi’s leadership. “History will show that she was the most important House leader in our history,” he said.
Pelosi became the first woman in history to become Speaker of the House in 2007 and held the third-highest political office in the United States for the second time since 2019. She has been a member of the Chamber of Congress for 35 years and has led the Democrats there for almost 20 years.
In an interview with reporters after her speech, Pelosi said that she would also stay out of the race for leadership of the faction and would not support any candidate. She will also not sit on any committees in the future Congress.
Of the attack on her husband made her “reconsider staying,” Pelosi said. But she finally decided to step aside. “Frankly, I’ve personally been ready to go for a while. Because there are things I want to do. I like to dance, I like to sing. There’s life out there, isn’t there?”
Opponent of Trump, hate figure of the right
Pelosi is known as an outstanding tactician, leading the Democratic faction with great skill and holding the disparate wings together. Among other things, she played an important role in the passage of the health care reform of the then US President Barack Obama in 2010.
During the presidency of Republican Donald Trump (2017 to 2021), the mother of five and a devout Catholic was the most important domestic opponent of the right-wing populist. Under her chairmanship, the Chamber of Deputies initiated two impeachment proceedings against Trump. Also unforgettable, like Pelosi in 2020 after Trump’s State of the Union speech in Congress demonstratively tore up a copy of the text of the speech.
Pelosi has also long been a hate figure for many right-wingers in the US, who see her as the incarnation of an aloof left-wing elite. That was shockingly evident in the brutal attack on Pelosi’s husband, Paul, at the couple’s San Francisco home in late October. The attacker, who seriously injured the 82-year-old with a hammer, was targeting Nancy Pelosi.
Representative Hakeem Jeffries is being traded as Pelosi’s successor at the head of the Democrats. The 52-year-old would be the first African American in history to lead a party in a chamber of congress. In the new House of Representatives, he would be the minority leader. Jeffries paid tribute to Pelosi in the short message service on Thursday Twitter as “GOAT” (Greatest Of All Time). “Thank you for everything you’ve done for America.”