Congress and the White House

It is official:

   “More than a week after Election Day, Republicans secured the 218th seat needed to flip the House from Democratic control. The full scope of the party’s majority may not be clear for several more days — or weeks — as votes in competitive races are still being counted.” - Associated Press

House Republicans received the news during a reception at the Library of Congress for newly elected members. 

But the news of the day on Capitol Hill is the decision by Speaker Nancy Pelosi to step aside from her leadership of House Democrats.  She has led the caucus for twenty years – an extraordinary run for a legislative leader in the House.  Speaker Pelosi is 82.  In 2018, when she ran for Speaker after Democrats took back control of the House, she made a pledge to step aside after the 2022 elections.  All year, however, she made clear she would not decide until after the elections.  Many wanted her to stay – including President Biden and Senate Majority Leader Schumer (D-NY).  But many Democrats in the House are ready to move on to a new era of leadership.  Younger Members with leadership ambitions have had to wait a long time for the opportunity to move up. 

Leadership elections for House Democrats are scheduled for the week after Thanksgiving.  With Speaker Pelosi’s decision to step aside, attention will turn to who will replace her.  The current number 2 in House Leadership is Steny Hoyer (D-MD).  He is extremely well-liked throughout the caucus (and by most Republicans).  But he is also 83 years old and has served in leadership for nearly 20 years.  The House Democratic Caucus chair, Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) is 52 and widely seen as the leader of the next generation of Democrats.  He would be the first black leader of either party in the House.  Leader Hoyer must first decide if he intends to run for the top spot.  If he does, Rep. Jeffries must then decide if he wants to challenge Leader Hoyer or wait a few more years for a future run.  A race between the two will be a generational clash between two well-liked and respected legislators, each with a base of support and a compelling case to make to their colleagues.

Republicans narrowly win House, ending full Democratic control of Congress
The GOP takeover will end two years of one-party control on Capitol Hill
The Washington Post
By Hannah Knowles, Marianna Sotomayor and Colby Itkowitz
November 16, 2022 – 9:34pm

What Divided Government Means for Washington
GOP control of House likely shatters chances of major legislation and puts President Biden on defense
The Wall Street Journal
By Tarini Parti, Natalie Andrews and Lindsay Wise
November 16, 2022 – 6:53pm

McConnell prevails in Senate GOP leadership contest
Senators reject Cruz proposal to delay election until after Georgia runoff
Roll Call
By Niels Lesniewski
November 16, 2022 – 9:20pm

Senate advances Respect for Marriage Act in bipartisan 62-37 vote
CBS News
By Melissa Quinn
November 16, 2022 – 7:06pm