Washington: House Democrats ushered in a new generation of leaders on Wednesday with Rep. Hakeem Jeffries elected to be the first Black American to head a major political party in Congress at a pivotal time as long-serving Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her team step aside next year.
Showing rare party unity after their midterm election losses, the House Democrats moved seamlessly from one history-making leader to another, choosing the 52-year-old New Yorker, who vowed to “get things done” in the new Congress, even after Republicans won control of the chamber. The closed-door vote was unanimous, by acclamation.
“We stand on their collective broad shoulders,” Jeffries said afterward of Pelosi and her team.
“The best thing that we can do as a result of the seriousness and solemnity of the moment,” he had said earlier, “is lean in hard and do the best damn job that we can for the people.”
It’s rare that a party that lost the midterm elections would so easily regroup and stands in stark contrast with the upheaval among Republicans, who are struggling to unite around GOP leader Kevin
McCarthy as the new House speaker as they prepare to take control when the new Congress convenes in January.