The small but growing anti-Pelosi movement in New York

U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi speaks at a press conference at the National Press Club in February in Washington.
U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi speaks at a press conference at the National Press Club in February in Washington.
Albert H. Teich/Shutterstock
U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi speaks at a press conference at the National Press Club in February in Washington.

The small but growing anti-Pelosi movement in New York

Several House Democrats and congressional candidates have declined to support Nancy Pelosi.
July 16, 2018

Rep. Joseph Crowley, the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus who was widely considered to be a frontrunner to replace House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi before he was defeated in his primary by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, declined to support Pelosi for speaker of the House, should the Democrats retake the House. “It's up to the next Congress, Democratic Caucus to decide that fate,” he said on July 15.

Crowley isn’t the only New Yorker who has expressed wariness about a potential Pelosi speakership. Here are other members of Congress and congressional candidates who have either declined to endorse her, or said outright that they would not support her.

Rep. Kathleen Rice

Rice, a Democratic congresswoman in Nassau County, voted against Pelosi to be minority leader in January 2017. She told CNN in June 2017 that Pelosi needed to step down. “We need a winning strategy and I think the first step to getting to a winning strategy is a change in leadership,” she said. Rice added that “it's time for people to know when to go.”

Rep. Brian Higgins

In June this year, Higgins, a moderate Democrat from the Buffalo area, told The Buffalo News that he would not back her as speaker or as minority leader next year. “She's listening, but this is my conclusion: She’s aloof, frenetic and misguided,” Higgins said.

Max Rose

The Democrat challenging GOP Rep. Dan Donovan has said that he would support a change in Democratic leadership were he elected to Congress. “If the Democratic Party is going to earn back the trust of the American people then we need to show them that we are serious about changing our politics – and that means we need a change in leadership,” Rose said in a statement to Politico in June.

Anthony Brindisi

The Democrat challenging Rep. Claudia Tenney told the Syracuse Post-Standard in May that it was “time for new leadership on both sides of the aisle.”

Nate McMurray

McMurray, who is facing Rep. Chris Collins, may have had a bone to pick with Pelosi ever since Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in April that Pelosi supported Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul to run for Congress instead of McMurray. “I think it’s time to move on,” McMurray said of Pelosi in June.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Ocasio-Cortez sidestepped the issue of whether she would support Pelosi to lead the House Democrats in an interview with CNN in June. "I think it's far too early to make those kinds of commitments right now," Ocasio-Cortez said.

Grace Segers
is City & State’s digital reporter. She writes daily content on New York City and New York state politics.
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