Freshman Dem Cisneros joins anti-Pelosi letter

Freshman Dem Cisneros joins anti-Pelosi letter
© Stefani Reynolds

Rep.-elect Gil Cisneros (D-Calif.) has signed on to a letter vowing to oppose Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOvernight Health Care — Presented by American Health Care Association — California monitoring 8,400 people for coronavirus | Pence taps career official to coordinate response | Dems insist on guardrails for funding Overnight Energy: Murkowski, Manchin unveil major energy bill | Lawmakers grill EPA chief over push to slash agency's budget | GOP lawmaker accuses Trump officials of 'playing politics' over Yucca Mountain Hillicon Valley — Presented by Facebook — Federal court rules tech giants can censor content | Trump upends surveillance fight | Senate passes bill barring federal funds for Huawei equipment MORE (D-Calif) for Speaker, according to a Democratic aide, providing a slight boost to an anti-Pelosi insurgency that has been softening in recent days.

Cisneros, who won the seat occupied by retiring Rep. Ed RoyceEdward (Ed) Randall RoyceThe most expensive congressional races of the last decade Mystery surrounds elusive sanctions on Russia Hillicon Valley: Lawmakers struggle to understand Facebook's Libra project | EU hits Amazon with antitrust probe | New cybersecurity concerns over census | Robocall, election security bills head to House floor | Privacy questions over FaceApp MORE (R-Calif.), was critical of Pelosi on the campaign trail but had not formally announced his position on the longtime Democratic leader's bid for Speaker.

A group of critics released a letter last Monday promising to vote for new leadership in both the closed-door caucus vote and on the House floor. Sixteen Democrats initially signed the letter, but Rep. Brian HigginsBrian HigginsOn The Money: Deficit spikes 25 percent through January | Mnuchin declines to say why Trump pulled Treasury nominee who oversaw Roger Stone case | Lawmakers trade insults over Trump budget cuts Lawmakers trade insults over Trump budget cuts 'Medicare for All' backers notch win with high-profile hearing MORE (D-N.Y.) pulled his name off the letter and said he would be supporting Pelosi's Speaker bid after she agreed to prioritize infrastructure spending and expanding Medicare.

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Rep. Marcia FudgeMarcia Louise FudgeGabbard calls on DNC chairman to step down after Iowa 'debacle' DNC chairman says he's 'absolutely not' considering resigning Key House Democrat says Perez must go: 'He doesn't lead on anything' MORE (D-Ohio), another critic who had been considering a challenge to Pelosi, also reversed course last week.

Cisneros brings the letter back to 16 signatures, which -- combined with a handful of other Democrats who have vowed to oppose Pelosi -- could be enough to block Pelosi's ascension.

Democratic leadership elections, where Pelosi only needs a simple majority to become the party's nominee, are scheduled for Wednesday.