Dem lawmaker: 'There's plenty of competent females' that can be Speaker instead of Pelosi

Dem lawmaker: 'There's plenty of competent females' that can be Speaker instead of Pelosi
© Greg Nash

Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) John RyanHouse Dem renews call for censuring Steve King The Hill's Morning Report - Dems contemplate big election and court reforms Hillicon Valley: Google takes heat at privacy hearing | 2020 Dems to debate 'monopoly power' | GOP rips net neutrality bill | Warren throws down gauntlet over big tech | New scrutiny for Trump over AT&T merger MORE (D-Ohio) said Wednesday that a congresswoman besides Rep. Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiPelosi, Dems plot strategy after end of Mueller probe Coons after Russia probe: House Dems need to use power in 'focused and responsible way' Trump, Congress brace for Mueller findings MORE (D-Calif.) should be the House Speaker. 

“There’s plenty of really competent females that we can replace her with,” Ryan told reporters, before listing people such as Rep. Marcia FudgeMarcia Louise FudgeCongressional Black Caucus faces tough decision on Harris, Booker Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee to step down as CBC Foundation chair amid lawsuit Reporter says to expect Capitol Hill to take action on North Carolina's 9th District MORE (D-Ohio) as potential candidates, The New York Times reported Thursday.

His comments come as the battle for Democratic leadership in the House intensifies. Pelosi, who held the Speaker position from 2007 to 2011, expressed confidence on Thursday that she had enough support to be voted into the role.  

But many lawmakers are insistent about the idea of having a new face in House leadership. As of Wednesday night, 17 House Democrats had signed onto a letter pledging not to support Pelosi's Speaker bid, according to Huffington Post. 

Ryan has urged Fudge, a former chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), to consider running against the California congresswoman. 

"I'm still thinking about it," Fudge told CNN on Thursday night, adding that she has been overwhelmed by the amount of people encouraging her to run. 

Ryan and other male lawmakers have faced criticism for their outspoken efforts to oppose Pelosi. 

“These male members were elected and got back here because of what women did,” Rep. Anna EshooAnna Georges Eshoo Cuts to Medicare and Medicaid will cause overall health-care costs to rise Overnight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — FDA issues proposal to limit sales of flavored e-cigs | Trump health chief gets grilling | Divisions emerge over House drug pricing bills | Dems launch investigation into short-term health plans Divisions emerge over House drug price bills MORE (D-Calif.) said, The Times reported. 

Pelosi on Thursday released statements touting support from multiple CBC members. She also earned the support from a pair of newly elected California lawmakers.