House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., plans to stay in Congress until at least after the 2022 midterm elections, lengthening her almost 20-year stint as the top House Democrat even after she turns 82 years old.
According to CNN, Pelosi is planning to run for reelection, and sources familiar with her thinking are saying that she isn’t ruling out possibly staying in leadership after 2022, even though the lawmaker has stated that her intention is to leave as the top House Democrat.
Democrats have mixed feelings about Pelosi staying or leaving after 2022. On one hand, many House Democrats want Pelosi to pave the way for younger leadership. On the other hand, many fear that the party’s infighting, which has escalated in recent months over President Joe Biden’s legislative priorities, will overshadow fighting House Republicans.
Pelosi is generally seen by House Democratic Caucus as a leader who “still commands respect, and no small measure of fear.”
However, she may be losing her grip on the caucus as there are members less concerned with loyalty and willing to sabotage negotiations for a social media hit, CNN notes, which is why she had to repeatedly reschedule votes over the last few months.
CNN continues that “admirers and detractors both confess to a sense of dread about what things will be like after Pelosi leaves,” and, regarding Pelosi’s grip on the caucus, that “whoever comes after her won’t have anywhere near that control.”
Many caucus members told CNN that Pelosi hasn’t prepared the caucus for after she leaves Congress.