WASHINGTON — Nancy Pelosi reclaimed the gavel today as the California Democrat gained 220 votes to become the 63rd speaker of the House.
Pelosi, 78, was previously speaker from 2007-2011. She needed 216 votes to win.
Defections on both sides of the aisle came largely from conservatives, as a handful of GOPs picked a prominent Freedom Caucus member and a handful of fiscally conservative Blue Dog Democrats picked other-than-Pelosis or declined to vote at all.
House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) nominated Pelosi for the job, saying that her “track record of success is unparalleled in American history” but she’s “just getting started.”
“Nancy Pelosi is a woman of faith… a sophisticated strategist,” Jeffries said, adding, “Let me be clear: House Democrats are down with NDP.”
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) placed Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) name into nomination. “No one has fought harder for the rights and freedoms of American families,” she said. “…No one has been a greater champion of ensuring that our government is limited.”
There were 192 votes for McCarthy and 18 for other candidates.
Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) voted for Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), drawing some boos.
Reps. Jim Banks (R-Ind.), Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), Jody Hice (R-Ga.), Scott Perry (R-Pa.), and Massie voted for House Freedom Caucus co-founder Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio).
Jordan, though, voted for McCarthy.
Freshman Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-N.Y.), co-chairman for whip in the Blue Dog Coalition, voted for former Vice President Joe Biden.
Blue Dog Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.) voted “present.” There are at least seven additions to the Blue Dogs this Congress. Blue Dog Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) voted for Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio).
Reps. Jason Crow, a freshman Dem from Colorado and Iraq/Afghanistan veteran, and Max Rose, a freshman New York Dem and veteran of the war in Afghanistan, voted for fellow vet Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.). Freshman Reps. Joe Cunningham (D-S.C.), Jared Golden (D-Maine), Mikie Sherrill (D-N.J.), and Abigail Spanberger (D-Va.) voted for Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.).
Rep. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) voted for Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.). Rep. Conor Lamb (D-Pa.) voted for Rep. Joe Kennedy (D-Mass.).
Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-N.Y.), a longtime Pelosi foe, voted for Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.
Freshman Rep. Jeff Van Drew (D-N.J.) unsuccessfully tried to vote “no” and was eventually marked as “present.”
Rep. Walt Jones (R-N.C.) was home ill thus did not cast a vote.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) voted for Pelosi, drawing some gasps in the chamber. Freshman Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), a former CIA analyst, voted “present.”
When the roll call got to the “c”s, one of the young children brought into the chamber by lawmakers cried “stop!” Lawmakers laughed.