Pelosi to Face Little-Known Challenger as Democrats Rue Election

Dems delay vote on picking leaders
Victoria Sarno Jordan

22 November, 2016

Ohio Democratic Congressman Tim Ryan says he'll challenge Nancy Pelosi for her seat as House minority leader.

Ryan sent a letter to those in the House Democratic Caucus, announcing his intentions to run in leadership elections.

The Ohio Democrat, however, said he will only serve as House minority leader if a minimum of two-thirds of the party caucus supports him in November 30's secret ballot vote. "This should indicate to all of us that keeping our leadership team completely unchanged will simply lead to more disappointment in future elections", he said in a statement. "I know I can do that, I've been doing it my whole career". "We need to do something different".

"The consensus is clear", Ryan wrote. "There's a lot of unease", Pelosi said when asked about the potential challenge.

Dan Polivka, Trumbull County commissioner and chairman of the county's Democratic Party, is in a position to understand the significance of Ryan possibly becoming the next House Minority Leader.

"Nancy Pelosi's average constituent makes $137,000 a year".

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"To state the obvious, it could certainly benefit the Valley to have Tim Ryan in a leadership position", Munroe said.

Republicans kept their majorities in both Senate and House after some Democrats had predicted double-digit wins in the House and a chance to win the Senate. "Since her relegation to the minority, Pelosi has repeatedly assured reporters, cycle after cycle, that a Democrat majority is right around the corner, only to be soundly defeated each time".

Ryan said he plans to introduce new policies and ideas in the coming weeks to energize the Democratic Party, as well as "fight the intolerance and dangers that President-elect Trump represents". Vote for me and I will dedicate all of my energy to lead us back into the majority.

Rep. Eric Swalwell of California said Democrats need to support Pelosi as a steady hand against Trump. He added: "I would think it has to be at the top".

It'll be tough to oust Pelosi - the minority leader has built up a loyal support base during her 14-year tenure as caucus leader. "My main goal is to have a conversation as to what happened with the election and what we can do to grow as a party".

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