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Nine Democrats vow to oppose Pelosi for speaker unless House rule changes are adopted

As House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi ...

Posted: Nov 25, 2018 10:47 AM
Updated: Nov 25, 2018 10:47 AM

As House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi clears hurdles in her bid to become the next speaker, nine members of her own party circulated a letter on Friday indicating they will not support her bid for the top leadership role unless she endorses their proposed changes to House rules.

Nine of the 24 House Democrats who are members of the Problem Solvers Caucus -- a bipartisan group -- signed the letter, which asked for changes that would, in essence, empower rank-and-file members to push bills in the House, a power now reserved for the leadership.

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"While we appreciate Leader Pelosi's broad commitment to our effort, we have yet to receive specific commitments to our proposed rules changes that would help 'Break the Gridlock' and allow for true bipartisan governing in this new era of divided government," the group wrote.

The letter's signees condemn "obstructionism and pure partisanship" in current politics and note that there has been a "stalemate" in recent discussions with Pelosi but hope to work toward a consensus.

According to a source familiar, the nine members who signed are: Reps. Thomas Suozzi of New York; Tom O'Halleran of Arizona; Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey; Daniel Lipinski of Illinois; Kurt Schrader of Oregon; Stephanie Murphy of Florida; Jim Costa of California; Darren Soto of Florida; and Vicente Gonzalez of Texas.

Gottheimer, one of the chairmen of the Problem Solvers Caucus, told CNN on Friday that he had been in touch with Pelosi and her team a half dozen times over the course of the week.

"If we don't figure a way to govern together, we're not going to get things through the Senate and to the President," he said in a phone call.

Gottheimer emphasized that the opposition letter is not about any one person in particular but instead about "process and governing."

Schrader, a Democrat and vocal critic of Pelosi, has signed both Friday's letter and a separate letter released Monday signed by 16 Democrats who called for new leadership. One of those 16 signees from Monday's letter, Rep. Brian Higgins of New York, later said he would back Pelosi.

While both letters underscore some of the obstacles Pelosi faces in returning to the speakership, she is widely expected to win a large majority of her caucus' support when the party votes behind closed doors in leadership elections once the House returns next week. The actual vote for speaker will happen once the new Congress is sworn in in January, where Pelosi will need a majority of the full House to become speaker -- 218 votes, if all House members participated. However, Pelosi could win with fewer than 218 votes if some members of the caucus vote "present," which does not count to the overall vote total, or if some members are absent.

Still the push by more moderate members of the Democratic caucus to halt Pelosi's rise and bring in new leadership has angered some in the more liberal wing of the party. Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez lambasted Friday's letter on Twitter.

"9 Dems are choosing to hold the entire 220+ caucus hostage if we don't accept their GOP-friendly rules that will hamstring healthcare efforts from the get-go," Cortez tweeted. "People sent us here to get things done, not 'negotiate' with an admin that jails children and guts people's healthcare."

Pelosi's office has maintained confidence that she'll return to the speakership in January and the California Democrat has met with some critics, opponents and incoming Democrats who promised to vote against Pelosi as a campaign issue.

RELATED: Freshmen Democrats feel the squeeze as Pelosi fight intensifies

Earlier this week, Pelosi benefited from a decision by Rep. Marcia Fudge, who was considering running against Pelosi for speaker, to not run for the top House spot and endorse Pelosi for the job. Fudge was among the lawmakers Pelosi met with last week. Pelosi announced on Tuesday that Fudge would chair a House Administration subcommittee on elections.

So far, no other Democrat has emerged as a potential candidate to challenge Pelosi for the top job, a key hurdle for those who've opposed he return to the speakership.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 161516

Reported Deaths: 3916
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto10708104
Hinds10519205
Harrison7555113
Jackson6708128
Rankin6130112
Lee547697
Madison5202110
Forrest400187
Jones382189
Lauderdale3727147
Lafayette344057
Washington3367108
Lamar307550
Lowndes261167
Oktibbeha259962
Bolivar250185
Panola240253
Neshoba2311122
Marshall227151
Leflore213991
Monroe212278
Pontotoc211231
Lincoln200867
Sunflower195555
Warren184958
Tate184051
Union176826
Copiah172540
Pike168360
Pearl River163870
Yazoo162940
Scott162730
Itawamba162637
Alcorn160428
Coahoma157844
Prentiss156732
Simpson155153
Adams148352
Grenada147145
Leake143344
Holmes135761
Covington135541
Tippah132530
George131725
Winston131726
Hancock130942
Wayne124924
Attala124735
Marion124248
Tishomingo114844
Chickasaw112132
Newton112129
Tallahatchie100727
Clay97127
Clarke95653
Jasper88523
Stone83115
Calhoun81513
Walthall79930
Montgomery78826
Carroll76315
Smith75716
Lawrence75214
Yalobusha74428
Noxubee74217
Perry69326
Tunica63519
Greene63022
Jefferson Davis60217
Amite59315
Claiborne59316
Humphreys55719
Quitman5117
Benton50518
Kemper49318
Webster47914
Wilkinson41322
Jefferson38712
Franklin3726
Choctaw3697
Sharkey33117
Issaquena1234
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 260359

Reported Deaths: 3776
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson34716513
Mobile20452370
Madison14215153
Tuscaloosa13755173
Montgomery12731243
Shelby1110278
Baldwin9341137
Lee801566
Morgan722855
Etowah692170
Calhoun6809121
Marshall675058
Houston552739
DeKalb512940
Cullman480246
St. Clair460357
Limestone455046
Lauderdale443357
Elmore432567
Walker3861112
Talladega381157
Jackson361623
Colbert341546
Blount315845
Autauga289342
Franklin262634
Coffee257717
Dale244454
Dallas234932
Chilton233641
Covington232434
Russell23153
Escambia206932
Tallapoosa190291
Chambers187551
Clarke164120
Pike163814
Marion148236
Winston144725
Lawrence137336
Pickens129720
Geneva12818
Marengo126724
Bibb125238
Barbour121429
Butler120042
Randolph107022
Cherokee106724
Hale101432
Fayette99916
Clay94825
Washington93921
Henry8996
Monroe84611
Lowndes82629
Cleburne80714
Macon77122
Crenshaw73330
Conecuh72914
Lamar7258
Bullock70919
Perry6987
Wilcox65518
Sumter59522
Greene44518
Choctaw43519
Coosa3824
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