On Wednesday a team of Democrat “rebels” who’d vowed to block House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, 78, from serving as House speaker again surrendered, agreeing to offer her the gavel once more in exchange for one concession: That she relinquish her power by 2022, at the latest.
The deal would limit her and three of her peers to a total of three 2-year terms in leadership positions, plus an extra fourth term contingent on two-thirds majority House approval.
The deal would specifically apply to Pelosi, incoming House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, incoming House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn and Rep. Ben Ray Luján.
And since the House minority leader already served two terms under former President Barack Hussein Obama, she’d only be able to serve two additional terms — or four years — going forward.
“For some time, there have been a number of conversations to advance a proposal to institute term limits for senior leadership positions in our Caucus,” Pelosi said in a statement Wednesday evening.
“It is my understanding that Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries and incoming Rules Committee Chair Jim McGovern plan to bring up this proposal for a discussion and a vote by February 15th. I am comfortable with the proposal and it is my intention to abide by it whether it passes or not.”
DONE DEAL: ” I am comfortable with the proposal and it is my intention to abide by it whether it passes or not,” Pelosi says. pic.twitter.com/lhY2kEGkDs
— Mike DeBonis (@mikedebonis) December 12, 2018
Thus far Hoyer and Clyburn have reportedly vowed to not support the deal.
“She’s not negotiating for me,” Hoyer told reporters Tuesday. “I am not for term limits. I am for the intellect of the voter, whether it’s my constituency or my colleague being able to operate without such constraint and choose who they want when they want.”
After Democrats retook the House during the midterms last month, the minority leader’s critics signed a letter opposing her potential speakership, arguing that the party needed a new direction.
“Our majority came on the backs of candidates who said that they would support new leadership because voters in hard-won districts, and across the country, want to see real change in Washington,” they wrote. “We promised to change the status quo, and we intend to deliver on that promise.”
Thanks to the deal reached Wednesday, Pelosi now boasts enough support to be House speaker: “Their support would be enough to secure the House majority that she needs for her election to speaker on Jan. 3 — 218 votes if all members are present and voting for an individual,” The Washington Post notes.
While this represents a victory for Pelosi, many view it as a capitulation by her critics, who’d argued that it’s time for a new, younger generation of Democrats to take over key leadership positions.
According to conservatives like Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel, this deal only serves to prove that the so-called Democrat “rebels” who’d portrayed themselves as mavericks ready to bring change to Washington, D.C., were full of it.
“So many Dem House candidates have proven themselves to be hypocrites,” she tweeted Wednesday. “They knew they were lying when they promised not to support Nancy Pelosi for speaker. For many of them, that broken promise will be their first vote in Congress. Voters won’t forget it.”
Others appear to agree:
So many Dem House candidates have proven themselves to be hypocrites.
They knew they were lying when they promised not to support Nancy Pelosi for speaker.
For many of them, that broken promise will be their first vote in Congress.
Voters won’t forget it.
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) December 12, 2018
For some freshmen #Democrats, their first of many broken promises occurs before they’ve even been sworn in:
— Michael Johns (@michaeljohns) December 12, 2018
How quickly they can be bought. Nothing changes. The next 2 years will be a train wreck.
— DERRICK (@DOVERMOHLE) December 13, 2018
Can these narcissistic boomers just step aside for once?
— Jessica Nutt (@richardpnutt) December 13, 2018
This criticism does not appear to concern the so-called “rebels.”
“We are proud that our agreement will make lasting institutional change that will strengthen our caucus and will help develop the next generation of Democratic leaders. We will support and vote for Nancy Pelosi for Speaker of the House in the 116th Congress,” they said in a joint statement.
Only a handful of House Democrats, including a few freshmen, intend to continuing opposing the House minority’s leader’s bid for House speaker. This means that unless something changes before the speaker vote on Jan. 3, Nancy Pelosi will be the House speaker again.
The response on social media has not been positive:
Do not let this woman retain her leadership. She will fight for status quo and nothing more.
Nancy Pelosi agrees to term limit of four years, tackling another hurdle to becoming House Speaker https://t.co/lAlZZmwDcP
— Merciless Indian Savage (@MercilessIndian) December 13, 2018
My condolences to the lost Dems if they reelect Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House for the next 4 years, as she is quite incompetent, corrupt weak and part of the establishment! Again, this would be an ideal moment to have a new, vibrant, young, creative, intelligent, 1/
— orion77 (@orion7710) December 12, 2018
uncorrupt, not jaded, fresh Speaker of the House, rather than recycled damaged goods. It’s always good for politicians to have a sense of measure and perspective, i.e. to know when it is their time and when it is important to step down. Sadly, neither Pelosi, Clinton, etc. do. 2/
— orion77 (@orion7710) December 12, 2018
@NancyPelosi Pelosi sold her soul to the devil – she wants the speaker of the house so bad, she’s willing to place term limits on the position. Methuselah should be her nickname.
— Gwen (@firecracker1957) December 13, 2018
Nancy Pelosi sucks
There are so many new young members of the house that would be so much better as speaker
That is something all Democrats and Republicans should agree on but for some reason don’t
— Paige Leonard (@paige_e_leonard) December 12, 2018
Among those who disagree with Paige Leonard is the president, ironically enough.
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