Cummings to Dems: Again Pelosi for speaker or danger ‘self-destructive’ battle


Rep. Elijah Cummings House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi hold a news conference.

Rep. Elijah Cummings argued that selecting Home Minority Chief Nancy Pelosi to grow to be speaker would forestall a divisive marketing campaign that would shatter Democratic unity. | Chip Somodevilla/Getty Pictures

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), an influential Home Democrat, pleaded Monday with colleagues and incoming Home freshmen to reject the efforts of a “small group” of Democrats he mentioned is “making an attempt to generate opposition” to Nancy Pelosi’s bid for the speakership.

“For 2 years, they asserted that with Nancy Pelosi as our chief, Democrats might by no means win again the Home. They claimed that these relentless Republican assaults made Chief Pelosi seem too divisive, and so they argued that she ought to step apart for the nice of the social gathering,” Cummings wrote in a “Expensive Colleague” letter to the incoming class of Democrats. “However then final Tuesday occurred. And the American folks obliterated the speculation that Nancy Pelosi couldn’t lead Home Democrats to victory.”

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Cummings, a Maryland Democrat who has represented a Baltimore district because the 1996 elections, provided a preview of how Pelosi’s allies will try and counter arguments that she’s overstayed her welcome as Democratic chief — she’s led the social gathering within the Home for 16 years — and has grow to be a divisive determine that has jeopardized Democratic features in swing Home districts.

A slew of Democratic victors in final week’s elections vowed to oppose Pelosi in a Home flooring vote, imperiling her bid for a second stint as speaker. However no various candidate has emerged but, and Pelosi’s allies are starting to mount a forceful marketing campaign suggesting that Pelosi’s management and expertise is important to information the brand new Democratic majority.

Cummings prompt that lawmakers who’ve vowed to oppose Pelosi ought to be at liberty to vote their conscience throughout a closed-door vote of the Democratic caucus, the place a majority of votes will carry the day. However as soon as the battle strikes to the Home flooring, Cummings mentioned, all Democrats ought to unite behind the winner — and if it is Pelosi, give her a convincing vote of help to blunt opposition by President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans.

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“After we as Democrats make our choice, our new members shouldn’t be pressured into voting in opposition to our social gathering’s nominee on the Home flooring in January—when the selection will likely be between the Democratic candidate and the Republican candidate,” Cummings wrote.

Cummings, who is predicted to grow to be the chairman of the Home Oversight Committee, has tangled with Republicans for years over a few of Congress’ highest-profile investigations and is predicted to play a central position in a wave of investigations of the Trump administration subsequent yr. Although his help of Pelosi was anticipated, his arguments in opposition to the ways of a band of Pelosi detractors are a window into how Pelosi will try to beat a number of the arguments provided by critics inside the Democratic Social gathering.

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Cummings famous that Democrats’ most potent difficulty within the 2018 marketing campaign was well being care, a difficulty he mentioned Pelosi is extra carefully recognized with than some other elected Democrats. “There wouldn’t be an Reasonably priced Care Act with out her, and nobody has battled extra successfully to defend it,” he argued.

However most of all, Cummings argued that selecting Pelosi would forestall a brutal and divisive marketing campaign that would shatter Democratic unity earlier than the brand new Congress even will get underway.

“Our new members promised their constituents to deliver stability and common sense to a dysfunctional Washington—to not be drawn into an effort to throw the Home into chaos,” he added. “Our new members promised to get outcomes on the problems their constituents care about—to not delay these efforts whereas they’re dragged right into a self-destructive management battle.”


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