“Speaker Emerita Pelosi is one of the most talented and transformational leaders of our lifetime, and it’s a good thing for San Francisco and the nation that she will continue to serve our community,” Wiener said.
“Right now, I’m focused like a laser on the end of our legislative session in Sacramento,” Wiener added, pointing to several housing bills he’s backing, and a measure to decriminalize psychedelics. “I look forward to seeking reelection to the Senate next year and continuing this critical work.”
Pelosi was first elected to Congress in 1987, and rose to become the first and — to date — only female speaker of the House, in 2007, a post she held until 2011, when Republicans regained control. After a prolonged stint as House minority leader, Pelosi reclaimed the speaker’s gavel in 2019, promising to hand over the reins in four years. She stepped down from the leadership post after her party narrowly lost the House in last year’s midterm election, but continued to represent her San Francisco district in Congress.
Pelosi is known as a masterful legislator and fundraiser who held together an often fractured caucus and pushed through major Democratic priorities including the Affordable Care Act, her crowning legislative achievement. In her last stint as speaker, she guided her party through an exceedingly turbulent period that included two impeachments of former President Donald Trump and the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Pelosi has often been vilified by Republicans, who commonly portray her as a far-left liberal, and have unflatteringly plastered her image on hundreds of campaign ads over the years.
Born into a prominent political family in Baltimore, Pelosi, who describes herself as a “devout Catholic,” remained out of the political limelight during her early professional life, working for years behind the scenes as a Democratic Party activist and fundraiser, while raising her five children in San Francisco.
But in 1987, after she was tapped by the ailing San Francisco Rep. Sala Burton to replace her, Pelosi beat out a crowded field in a special election, becoming one of just over 20 women in the House. In Washington, Pelosi quickly became an outspoken proponent for AIDS funding and, eventually, a ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee.
Pelosi’s decision to run once again comes just over a year before the 2024 presidential election, when her party hopes to win back control of the House from Republicans, who now hold a slim, 10-member majority. Her presence in the race is almost certain to boost Democratic fundraising efforts.