House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., brushed off concerns from rank-and-file Democrats Wednesday as she looked to retake the speaker’s gavel after the Democrats took control of the House on Tuesday -- saying she is the best person for the job.
Pelosi was asked at a press conference about whether she would seek the post, which she held between 2007 and 2011, when Democrats last held control of the chamber
Asked if she was confident she would be speaker again, she said, “Yes I am.”
She went on to note that President Trump had earlier said she “deserves” to be speaker.
“I don’t think anyone deserves anything. It’s not about what you have done, it’s what you can do. What you’ve done in the past speaks to your credentials, but it’s about what you can do, and I think I’m the best person to go forward, to unify, to negotiate,” she said.
“I’m a good negotiator, as anyone can see in terms of how we’ve won every negotiation so far,” she added.
However, skepticism from within her party’s ranks has crept into play, with party members nervous about handing the gavel back to a 78-year-old former speaker as they seek to present themselves as a forward-looking party. Pelosi flatly declined to answer further questions on the topic.
“I think that my case is about being the best person for how we go forward and I’m not going to answer more questions on that subject,” she said.
Pelosi, the nation's first female speaker, is a divisive figure in many parts of the country, and Republicans have expressed hope that she would be the pick for speaker. She has no declared challenger at the moment, and she is the favorite to take the gavel in January.
In 2016, Pelosi faced a leadership challenge from Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, but beat him 134 votes to 63.
Trump said Wednesday that if Democrats give Pelosi a hard time,”perhaps we will add some Republican votes.”
Pelosi expressed confidence also about her party' showing in the midterms and said that the focus of voters was healthcare, and expressed hope that there could be some bipartisan agreement on some issues. She noted that under her leadership, Democrats worked with President Bush to pass an energy bill and other legislation.
Fox News' Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.