Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the California Democrat who has been the first and only woman to hold the powerful post that’s third in line for the presidency, announced Thursday that she will step down from her position as leader of the House Democrats after two decades.
“For me the hour has come for a new generation to lead the Democratic caucus that I so deeply respect, and I’m grateful that so many are ready and willing to shoulder this awesome responsibility,” Pelosi said on the House floor, wearing one of her signature pantsuits. “I look forward to the unfolding story of our nation — a story of light and love, of patriotism and progress, of many becoming one, and always an unfinished mission to make the dreams of today the reality of tomorrow.”
Republicans narrowly seized control of the House in the midterm elections, and the GOP caucus has tapped Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.) to be its Speaker nominee. McCarthy, who didn’t attend Pelosi’s floor speech Thursday, still needs support of 218 House members during a vote in January to secure the post.
Pelosi served during some of the most divisive times in modern history, including during the Iraq War and the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol, where angry supporters of then-President Trump attempted to stop the certification of now-President Biden’s election. She was a chief foil to Trump during his presidency, earning his derision as “crazy” and “scary.”
“I have enjoyed working with three presidents,” Pelosi said in her outgoing speech, name-checking Presidents George W. Bush, Obama and Biden, while pointedly omitting Trump.
Biden, who had spoken to Pelosi before the speech, released a 531-word statement calling her “the most consequential speaker of the House of Representatives in our history.”
As the historic Speaker prepares to relinquish her gavel, NotedDC looks back at some of her most iconic moments in power:
BONUS: This photo of a 17-year-old Pelosi with then-Sen. John F. Kennedy (D-Mass.). Pelosi says her friend told her to save the pic because he “may be president one day.”
Gear up for several investigations into President Biden as Republicans take control of the House in the coming year.
“We’re focused on a lot of things, but Oversight … We feel this is utmost importance,” Rep. James Comer, the Kentucky Republican who likely will be heading up the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the coming term, told reporters Thursday. “We’re going to do a lot of investigations. A lot of probing.”
Republicans have spent years questioning the business dealings of the president’s son, Hunter Biden, and what role or influence he has had on the president through the years.
“We’re going to do a lot of investigations. A lot of probing,” Comer said.
He denied that the new GOP majority will solely focus on Biden, but it’s worth noting that former President Trump, who was impeached twice under Democratic rule, is closely aligned with Republicans on the Oversight panel and has already publicly asked “how many” times Republicans will impeach Biden.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR ELECTION DENIALISM AFTER THE MIDTERMS?
The legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election has been one of the most prominent issues in the Republican Party over the last two years. Candidates who expressed skepticism about or outright denied the results lost several high-profile races last Tuesday.
A week after the midterms, former President Trump announced his 2024 bid, and former Vice President Mike Pence said he’s considering his own amid his first public comments about his experience at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
The continued prominence of election denialism within the GOP in the years to come is in question. We looked at a couple midterm results analyses and talked to GOP strategists for insights.
According to a Washington Post analysis:
A Brookings analysis included state legislative candidates. From the report:
Some other takeaways:
GOP strategists weigh in: NotedDC asked two Republican strategists for their thoughts on whether questioning the legitimacy of the 2020 election might continue to be a major theme among candidates and elected officials going forward.
This week marked a year since President Biden signed the belabored $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package into law. The law provides money for roads, bridges and green energy initiatives, among other priorities.
The White House released a summary of what the historic spending package has done so far, and it includes:
—A look at the dispute between failed GOP gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake and Arizona election officials over Election Day machine issues and the gubernatorial election results
—Rand Paul will serve as the ranking Republican on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. The Kentucky senator said, “Given the committee’s duty to conduct oversight over the entire government, I remain hopeful that we will pursue a robust and bipartisan investigation into the origins of COVID.”
—Several Democrats hope to address the debt ceiling with bipartisan support during the lame-duck session. Prospects are unclear.
—Twelve Republicans joined 50 Democrats in the Senate in a procedural vote to advance a bill that would protect same-sex marriage.
ard to believe but it’s been less than a year since Samuel Bankman-Fried, the now disgraced head of crypto exchange FTX, testified optimistically about the future of cryptocurrency during a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Dec. 8, 2021.
The cryptocurrency firm, which recently imploded, prompting a wave of allegations of mismanagement and at least one class action lawsuit from people who lost their money in the company’s downfall.
“FTX is grateful to this committee for the opportunity to share information about the digital-asset ecosystem and suggest ways the benefits and promise of the industry can continue to be realized, and in a responsible way,” SBF, as he’s popularly known, told the committee in his opening remarks.
The hearing got little attention at the time, but in light of FTX’s monumental collapse and allegations of fraud and other misdeeds, it’s worth another watch.
“My goal has been to find ways to have positive impact on the world and to maximize that and to do so by supporting some really fantastic organizations,” SBF tells the members of Congress. “I think the industry has the potential to approve a lot of people’s lives.”
THEY SAID IT
“I await the day when my husband returns to lead an America that is characterized by peace, love and security,” former first lady Melania Trump in a statement to Breitbart about former President Trump’s decision to run again in 2024.
NUMBER TO KNOW
How much more Farm Bureau estimates families will be paying for Thanksgiving dinner this year, compared to last.
ONE MORE THING
White House wedding weekend
Naomi Biden, beloved granddaughter of POTUS and FLOTUS, is set to join a very exclusive list of brides this weekend when she weds her beau, Peter Neal, on the White House South Lawn on Saturday.
Elizabeth Alexander, a spokeswoman for first lady Jill Biden, confirmed the plans last year and the much-anticipated event is on track to happen just days after President Biden returns from an overseas trip that took him to Egypt, Cambodia and Mylasia.
Naomi Biden, the president’s eldest granddaughter, is the daughter of Hunter Biden and his ex-wife Kathleen Buhle.
D.C.’s continued chilly weather forecast for Saturday is partly cloudy with temperatures only barely reaching the mid-40s.
Noteworthy: The big event is taking place a day before President Biden’s
Continuing the South Lawn excitement, the president will pardon the National Thanksgiving Turkey in a ceremony there on Monday.