Marcia Fudge, Potential Pelosi Challenger Backs Away From Speaker Race

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The only potential Democrat publicly considering a challenge to Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for the House speakership abruptly announced Tuesday that she would support the San Francisco Democrat instead, after being given a new committee chairmanship.

As Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio announced her decision, Pelosi announced she would reinstate a subcommittee on elections, naming Fudge chair of that panel.

“I look forward to working with Chairwoman Fudge in this new role as we advance our efforts to offer all Americans a better deal for our democracy,” Pelosi said in a statement.

Fudge said in a statement Pelosi had guaranteed her that black women, a loyal Democratic constituency, would be at “the decision-making table” and that as chair of the new subcommittee, she will be able to work to uphold the Voting Rights Act.

Fudge’s decision perhaps makes Pelosi’s path to the speakership easier, dealing a blow to efforts to topple the leader who has served as top House Democrat since 2002.

“My consideration (to challenge Pelosi) was due in large part to the lack of sustained efforts that ensure diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels of the House. Further, despite the great success we experienced on November 6, voter protection and voter integrity are still at risk,” Fudge said in a statement.

“I am now confident that we will move forward together and that the 117th Congress will be a Congress of which we can all be proud. I now join my colleagues in support of the leadership team of Pelosi, Hoyer and Clyburn,” she added.

This is a setback for the Democratic rebellion trying to block Pelosi from regaining the speaker’s gavel, and a reminder of her effectiveness at sidelining opposition.

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