Not One of Nine Democrats in N.H. Congressional Race Will Commit to Supporting Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi
Nancy Pelosi / Getty Images
May 7, 2018

Nine Democrats are running to vie for the seat being left open by retiring Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D., N.H.), but not one said they would vote to make House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) speaker next year.

Josh DiStaso of ABC affiliate WMUR asked the 1st Congressional District candidates if they would support Pelosi for House Speaker in the event they be elected and Democrats win back the majority in November. DiStaso received three "nos," four were "non-committal," and two candidates declined to respond.

Deaglan McEachern, Terence O’Rourke, and Mindi Messmer said Pelosi's time as party leader has passed.

"I believe the Democratic Party and the country is in desperate need of new leadership and a new direction," McEachern said. "We need to restore faith back into the government. Our leaders for too long have been disconnected from those they represent. Though I am thankful for Nancy Pelosi's service to our party and country, I do not see her as a representative leading us into the future."

O’Rourke said, "Back during the government shutdown, I stated that it was time for Nancy Pelosi to go and I stand by that. If the voters trust the Democratic Party with a majority in the House this fall, it would be a violation of that trust, especially from younger voters, to return the leadership team of Pelosi, Hoyer, and Clyburn. It’s time for the nation to turn the page on that tired, failed political generation."

Shea-Porter's chief of staff, Naomi Andrews, who recently joined the race, was among those who gave a non-committal answer. Frontrunners Chris Pappas and Maura Sullivan also demurred, as did liberal candidate Levi Sanders, son of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.).

Despite disagreement within the Democratic Party on whether Pelosi should remain leader in the House, the minority leader confirmed last week she would run for speaker if Democrats win the majority after the midterm elections.

New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District is very competitive; Donald Trump won the district by a percentage point in 2016, and Shea-Porter both won and lost the district twice.