House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Thursday she will no longer lead the House's Democratic caucus, one day after Republicans clinched the majority following last week’s midterm election. Pelosi made the announcement from the floor of the House on Thursday.
She added that she will continue serving in Congress.
Her deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill said Thursday that she was still mulling her decision as of Wednesday night.
"The Speaker took two versions of her speech home last night as has been reported. Anybody who tells you they know what she will do is a liar," he said.
Democrats will narrowly lose control of the House, although the party outperformed most expectations. Historically, the party in control of the White House performs poorly in midterm elections. Depending on the results of several races yet to be called, Republicans will likely have a single-digit advantage in the House.
“This year, House Democrats defied expectations with an excellent performance: running their races with courage, optimism and determination,” Pelosi said on Wednesday. “In the next Congress, House Democrats will continue to play a leading role in supporting President Biden’s agenda — with strong leverage over a scant Republican majority.”
Pelosi earned a 19th term in Congress last week after winning her district with 84% of the vote.
She has led House Democrats since 2003, with two stints as House speaker from 2007-2011 and 2019-2023.
Given her stature as the top House Democrat over the last two decades, she has been a constant foil for Republicans.
She also has been the target of violence, most notably on January 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol, and last month when her husband Paul Pelosi was attacked during a home invasion.
Pelosi's announcement comes two days after Republicans said they intend to select current Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy as House speaker in January.