Hoyer Announces Bid for Majority Leader for 117th Congress

November 9, 2020 by Dan McCue
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON — House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer is once again running for the Democrat-controlled House’s second most powerful position.

In a letter to fellow Democrats made public Saturday, Hoyer said he’s proud of the unity and success the party has enjoyed since regaining the House majority in 2018, and proud of the role he played in accomplishing that objective.

“Unfortunately for the American people, the Senate refused to even consider much of the work we did,” he said. “Now, the 2020 election has given us great opportunities and continuing great challenges.

“Having a Democratic administration will clearly make an enormous difference, but our smaller majority and a closely divided Senate will necessitate creating and maintaining a broad consensus among us,” Hoyer wrote.

“I believe I have been a leader in that effort, which has enabled us to secure victories where possible while keeping our caucus united behind policies that reflect our shared Democratic values. That’s why I am running to serve as majority leader in the 117th Congress.”

Hoyer has represented Maryland’s 5th Congressional District since 1981, and is currently serving his 20th term in the House. Since 2003, he has been the second ranking Democrat in the House behind Nancy Pelosi.

He is a two-time House majority leader, serving from 2007 to 2011, and from 2019 to the present, and was House minority whip twice (from 2003-2007 and 2011-2019) when the chamber was under Republican control.

“I believe that my experience is well suited to helping our caucus navigate the challenges these next two years present,” Hoyer wrote. “I have spoken with almost everyone in our caucus, and I am heartened by the support I’ve received.

“I will continue listening closely to our members and soliciting your input over the next two years to ensure that we keep advancing our positive, progressive, and broadly popular legislative agenda for the people,” he vowed.

Hoyer, who is the dean of the Maryland Congressional delegation, has long worked to expand opportunities for all Americans, promoting and supporting policies that enhance the ability of Americans to ‘make it,’ policies he now expects to be cornerstones of President-elect Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda.

Hoyer also was instrumental in implementing positive changes in how the House accomplishes its work, in collaboration with Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Whip James Clyburn, and the caucus’s committee chairs.

“Together, we brought legislation to the floor at an ambitious pace to meet the challenges our nation faces and deliver results for our districts while ensuring that members could spend time back home with their constituents,” Hoyer wrote.

“When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, I pushed for changes that allowed remote committee work and proxy voting on the floor to keep members safe while the House continued to do its job,” he said.

In a separate statement accompanying his letter to colleagues, Hoyer said he’s confident that House Democrats in the 117th Congress “will get things done on behalf of the American people.”

“Our Caucus must stand together and remain united as we work to address the COVID-19 pandemic, build our economy back better, and ensure that every person in this country has the tools to Make It In America. I look forward to continuing working closely with all our members and committees to ensure that we deliver on our promises and renew Americans’ faith in their democracy and institutions of government,” he said.

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