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Marcia Fudge bolstered by encouragement to run for speaker, but remains undecided

Marcia Fudge, the Democratic congresswoman from Ohio who may be launching a bid against Nancy Pelosi for spe...

Posted: Nov 16, 2018 9:58 AM
Updated: Nov 16, 2018 9:58 AM

Marcia Fudge, the Democratic congresswoman from Ohio who may be launching a bid against Nancy Pelosi for speaker of the House, told CNN on Thursday that she is undecided about her bid, but seems bolstered by the outreach she's receiving.

"I have not made a decision, I'm still thinking about it," she said outside of her office on Capitol Hill. "It's a big decision. I mean, the speaker does an awful lot of things, the travel, the fundraising," and Fudge wants to make sure she's making the right decision. When might she decide? Probably not by Friday but "soon."

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Fudge says she's heard from more than 20 or 30 of her colleagues encouraging her to run. On Thursday, a list of 17 members of Congress indicated that they would not support Pelosi for speaker.

"It has been heartwarming and humbling to know how many people think that I should do this. It is something that people have (been) thinking about for, I think, some time and I'm just really, really pleased that they have the kind of confidence in me that they think that I'm the kind of person that should be able to do this."

And it's not just members who are encouraging her to run. Fudge has fielded calls from labor groups, from K Street lobbyists, from friends, from institutions and organizations. "Many people who are not in this body are encouraging me as well," she said.

Though she says she has not discussed her potential bid with him, Fudge did mention her friendship with Democratic Rep. Jim Clyburn of South Carolina, the No. 3 Democrat in the current House leadership. Earlier in the day, Clyburn, who is running for majority whip, said Fudge "would be a threat to me" and Pelosi if she were to run.

Fudge said that "without a doubt if I choose to do it" she will have fellow lawmakers nominate her for the November 28 vote. She also said she has not talked to Pelosi about this, nor has she reached out to freshman members -- such as Joe Cunningham of South Carolina -- who have indicated they won't support Pelosi. "I'm not going to start bombarding them with phone calls," she said.

To her detractors and critics, who say Pelosi pulled the Democrats across the finish line to win the majority and deserves to be speaker, Fudge says she pulled her weight too.

"I helped the majority too. As have most of us. I traveled the country, I raised money, I contributed money. Certainly not as much as she. But she didn't do this by herself. She also was the person who, over the last eight years, lost seats. It's one thing to give people credit for winning if you also make them responsible for losing."

Fudge, an African-American woman, wants to see more diversity in leadership.

"I also think that as I continue to hear not only her but other people say this is the most diverse Congress we've ever had, then our leadership should be diverse as well," she said.

Fudge says that as a leader she's much more "bottom up leader than top down."

She is not on board to make campaign finance revisions a top issue for the next Congress. Instead she cares about student debt and other issues from the 2018 midterm trail.

What about working with President Donald Trump?

"I know an awful lot about government. I have done this a long time and he hasn't," she said. "So I would be happy to help him figure out how to run the government when it is advantageous to the American people. When he's wrong I'm going to fight him every way I possibly can. But when he is willing to sit down and talk with us, I think we should be willing to sit down and talk to him."

Two of those issues: infrastructure, or a complete package for immigration.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 252475

Reported Deaths: 5521
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17120175
Hinds16207322
Harrison13353193
Rankin10689211
Jackson10303183
Lee8796141
Madison8232162
Jones6288110
Forrest5949119
Lauderdale5847180
Lowndes5355116
Lafayette494292
Lamar484165
Washington4777123
Bolivar3966108
Oktibbeha392480
Panola368378
Pontotoc362853
Monroe3533105
Warren348498
Union343060
Marshall341665
Neshoba3370152
Pearl River327899
Leflore3002105
Lincoln297085
Sunflower282669
Tate270862
Hancock266559
Alcorn263253
Itawamba262459
Pike262077
Scott246245
Prentiss245052
Yazoo244355
Copiah240849
Tippah240450
Simpson234867
Leake230564
Coahoma230054
Grenada217770
Covington211371
Marion210672
Adams204670
Winston200164
Wayne199630
George199038
Attala193559
Newton191342
Tishomingo184459
Chickasaw183644
Jasper169735
Holmes168567
Clay159033
Stone142320
Tallahatchie140134
Clarke138660
Calhoun135721
Smith120123
Yalobusha116534
Walthall111836
Noxubee110322
Greene109729
Montgomery109434
Carroll104221
Lawrence102417
Perry101631
Amite97725
Webster92224
Tunica86321
Claiborne86125
Jefferson Davis84125
Humphreys82924
Benton81523
Kemper77120
Quitman6888
Franklin66415
Choctaw60313
Wilkinson58325
Jefferson53819
Sharkey42717
Issaquena1596
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 422598

Reported Deaths: 6120
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson62039921
Mobile30225548
Madison27052186
Tuscaloosa20728267
Montgomery18978305
Shelby18504114
Baldwin16251182
Lee12465101
Morgan12233113
Etowah11735168
Calhoun11122200
Marshall10191107
Houston8598148
Cullman8023105
Limestone800274
Elmore7836101
DeKalb768397
Lauderdale754683
St. Clair7535120
Talladega6166108
Walker5897174
Jackson580341
Colbert532073
Blount530483
Autauga518455
Coffee441056
Dale396181
Franklin366248
Chilton336165
Russell330310
Covington327268
Escambia316842
Dallas303196
Chambers282769
Clarke281433
Tallapoosa2616107
Pike248729
Marion245650
Lawrence243647
Winston226635
Bibb215147
Geneva201435
Marengo199029
Pickens196531
Hale175842
Barbour172936
Butler169658
Fayette168226
Cherokee160330
Henry153621
Monroe145217
Randolph139835
Washington137626
Clay126145
Crenshaw118744
Lamar118019
Cleburne117423
Macon114735
Lowndes110335
Wilcox103121
Bullock99028
Perry97419
Conecuh94420
Sumter89026
Greene76023
Coosa60515
Choctaw51224
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