House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) announced Tuesday that she will run for reelection in 2022. Pelosi says that her goal is to “deliver for the people and defend democracy.”

Pelosi’s announcement that she will run for reelection comes despite her previous assurance in 2018 that this term will be her last as House Speaker after leading the Democrats for 19 years.

Many powerful Democrats like speaker Pelosi all in their 80’s – like House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-South Carolina) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland).

Many Democrats want new leadership to replace their old guard. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York), the House Democratic caucus chairman, is viewed by many Democrats to be Pelosi’s likely successor as the leader of House Democrats. Meanwhile, Republicans are planning for winning the speakership in 2022 election – they only need to flip five seats to have a majority.

But Pelosi’s decision to run for reelection this year postpones any messy Democrat leadership races and prevents her from becoming a lame duck prematurely. Democrats need her fundraising abilities in this tough year – she has raised over $1 billion for her colleagues over the past two decades.

Pelosi is expected to win reelection in her heavily Democratic district in San Francisco giving Democrats a fighting chance in the 2022 midterm election.

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