WASHINGTON, (Nexstar) – The new leader of the Democratic party in the U.S. House is making history as the first Black member of Congress to lead the party.
New York Democrat Hakeem Jeffries, the first black member elected to become House Democratic leader, will replace Speaker Nancy Pelosi as the head of the party.
“It’s an honor to stand before you today as the incoming House Democratic leader,” Rep. Jeffries (D-NY) said, “as we work to advance the ball for everyday Americans and get stuff done.”
Additionally, Massachusetts Congresswoman Katherine Clark and California’s Pete Aguilar were elected as the top Deputy and Democratic Caucus Chair.
Democrats are welcoming what they see as a generational shift.
“I think he has the tools that are necessary to lead us, and I support him and the rest of the slate,” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) said.
It’s a different story for Republicans as leader Kevin McCarthy tries to position himself to be the next Speaker of the House.
While McCarthy was able to get the votes to be the nominee for Speaker of the House, some of the most conservative members of his own party are threatening to sink McCarthy’s nomination.
“January 3rd, things are going to change. We’re going to focus on bringing this economy back, lowering inflation, American energy independence,” Rep. McCarthy (R-CA) explained.
But behind the scenes, McCarthy is fighting the political battle of his career as conservative members of his own party and the House Freedom Caucus are trying to sink his bid to become speaker.
So far, McCarthy has promised major concessions including promising to restore committee membership for Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene who was kicked off her committees after making antisemitic comments and condoning violence against Democrats.
House Freedom Caucus members want a more conservative leader, and they want changes to how the Republican party operates so that regular party members have more power.