WASHINGTON (CN) – In a blow to Democrats seeking to deny House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi the speaker’s gavel, Representative Marcia Fudge announced Tuesday that she will support her bid to become the next Speaker of the House.
Fudge was part of a group of Democrats critical of Pelosi’s efforts to become Speaker, telling reporters last week it was “clear” she would not be voting for her during the party’s leadership elections next month. Fudge, who represents Ohio, even considered challenging Pelosi for the job. But on Tuesday, she said she was no longer considering a run.
Fudge criticized the lack of diversity in the party’s House leadership, in contrast to the racially diverse group of candidates that helped restore a Democratic majority to the House earlier this month. However, Fudge said Tuesday Pelosi has assuaged her concerns about the extent to which minority groups will be heard under her leadership.
“She has also assured me that the most loyal voting bloc in the Democratic party, Black women, will have a seat at the decision-making table,” Fudge said in a statement. “I am now confident that we will move forward together and that the 116th Congress will be a Congress of which we can all be proud.”
Sixteen anti-Pelosi Democrats released a letter Monday stating their intention to vote for changes to the party’s leadership team in the House, though the group still remains without a clear candidate to challenge Pelosi.
Pelosi served as Speaker of the House from 2007 to 2011 and so far has been the only woman to serve in that position. Since 2011, she has been House Minority Leader.