Though no longer serving as Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) still wields considerable power in Congress. Many believe her nod of approval for Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) to run to take Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-CA) Senate seat is a requisite to Schiff moving forward to pursue his political aspirations.
On Thursday, Pelosi offered a conditional nod of approval — Schiff would have her endorsement if Feinstein, 89, chooses not to seek reelection.
Feinstein’s term will conclude in 2024. Schiff expressed interest in running to replace her in late 2022. Though prompted, Feinstein has not disclosed whether or not she will seek another term.
Should Schiff run for Feinstein’s seat, he will likely be joined by Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA) and Barbara Lee (D-CA).
In a statement released Thursday morning, Pelosi said that if Feinstein decides not to run, “I will be supporting House Intelligence Committee chair Adam Schiff, who knows well the nexus between a strong democracy and a strong economy. In his service in the House, he has focused on strengthening our democracy with justice and on building an economy that works for all.”
The San Francisco Chronicle depicted Pelosi’s statement as “the strongest sign yet that Feinstein will not seek re-election.”
Schiff noted that he is “honored to have earned” Pelosi’s support.
Positioning to be the early frontrunner in the race, he noted that “20 current and former members of the California delegation also endorsed his campaign for Senate,” according to The Daily Wire.
Schiff announced he would run for Feinstein’s Senate seat two days after new House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) removed him from the House Intelligence Committee, reportedly for multiple false statements to Congress and the American people and blatant political bias in his dealings.
Schiff responded by accusing McCarthy of “petty, political payback” for his participation in impeachment proceedings concerning former President Donald Trump.
Pelosi said the United States is at a “crossroads” leading up to the 2024 election. Her perspective is that Democrats are the defenders of democracy and Republicans are puppets of numerous special interest groups.
In a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle, Pelosi said:
“Ever since I supported Adam in his race for Congress in 2000, I have known his commitment to putting the American Dream in place for everyone.”
Pelosi added: “Coming from a family of immigrants, Adam has dedicated his life to public service. Every time I have asked Adam to take on the tough fight against extremist forces, he has responded with integrity, strength, and success.”
Pelosi also praised Feinstein in her statement, referring to her as a “iconic” senator with a “remarkable legislative record.”
Pelosi added: Feinstein “has my whole-hearted support” if she does decide to run for re-election.”
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