Published : Wednesday, November 21, 2018 | 5:42 AM
U.S. Rep. Judy Chu, who represents Pasadena in Congress, endorsed fellow California Rep. Nancy Pelosi for next Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives on a day which saw Pelosi enjoy a resurgence of support in her fight against a stubborn cadre inside the Democratic caucus calling for a leadership change.
Pelosi has been at the helm of the caucus for 16 years. Tuesday she struck a deal potential challenger and picked up key support to contiunue in the role.
Chu joined voices of Pelosi supporters which included former President Barack Obama.
“On Election Day, voters overwhelmingly backed Democratic candidates and policies, giving us our greatest gains since Watergate, and a clear mandate from coast to coast, in cities and suburbs, to clean up Washington and fight for equal opportunity for every American,” Chu said in a statement. “As we work to advance that mandate, we need a leader with the experience, skills, and vision to not only articulate our policies, but pass them into law. That leader is Nancy Pelosi.”
Pelosi, representing California’s 12th District, has been minority leader of the House of Representatives since 2011. She became the only woman to be House Speaker when she served as the 52nd Speaker from 2007 to 2011.
After the Democrats took control of the House in the November 6 election, Pelosi runs unchallenged for the speakership. On Tuesday, Ohio Democrat Rep. Marcia Fudge, who had earlier said she was entering the race, announced she will instead endorse Pelosi for the job, a CNN report said.
“I now join my colleagues in support of the leadership team of Pelosi, Hoyer and Clyburn,” Fudge said, referring to Reps. Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland) and James Clyburn (D-South Carolina), who are running to retain the respective positions of being the second and third next highest-ranking Democrats in the House.
Fudge released the statement after a group of 16 Democrats in the House issued a public letter vowing to derail Pelosi’s bid for the speakership.
In her statement of support, Chu said Pelosi has taken “Democratic priorities like health care from dream to reality.”
In every race around the country, preserving and protecting the Affordable Care Act was a top priority. That will remain our task in this Congress,” Chu said. “She defied the odds to do what everyone said was impossible and pass a law to expand health coverage like never before. She is also the one best suited to defend this law.”
Chu recalled she was a freshman in the House when debates on the Affordable Care Act began, and remembered how Pelosi’s involvement was critical in passing the law as well as keeping the Democratic caucus unified on the issue.
She said Pelosi, even with Republicans in the majority, “never backed down from what she knew the country needed.”
“With the most diverse Congress ever set to start in January, we need a leader like Nancy Pelosi who can ensure we all have a seat at the table and have a chance to be heard,” Chu said. “Leader Pelosi is the one we need in the room with Donald Trump because I know she will not back down.”