US House Speaker Pelosi to run for re-election

Democratic leader has not said if she will aim to continue in top role as party leader

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks during her weekly news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Reuters
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US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced on Tuesday that she is running for re-election of her San Francisco-area congressional seat after previously indicating this would be her last term as the chamber’s top Democrat.

“I am running for re-election to Congress and respectfully seek your support,” Ms Pelosi, 81, said in a video released by her campaign team. “I would be greatly honoured by it and grateful for it.”

It was not immediately clear if she would honour an agreement she had made with younger Democrats in securing an unprecedented second term as speaker after the 2018 election, in that she would serve only two additional terms in the role and then allow for a new generation of Democratic leadership to rise.

Ms Pelosi had been expected to step down, particularly as her party braces for a likely loss of its majority in the November 8 midterm elections.

In the video, she ticked off a list of unfinished business such as “justice for immigrants” and issues related to education and housing.

She said voting rights and even democracy itself were under assault, pointing to the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol and its political repercussions.

“While we have made progress, much more needs to be done to improve people’s lives,” Ms Pelosi said.

She added this autumn's midterm elections “are crucial: nothing less is at stake than our democracy".

“But we don’t agonise, we organise. I am running for re-election to Congress to deliver for the people and defend democracy,” she said.

The Californian has served in Congress since 1987 and was the first woman to serve as speaker.

Agencies contributed to this report

Updated: January 25, 2022, 11:51 PM