In advance of the swearing in of a new House Speaker on Wednesday, DNC Chairman Tim Kaine issued the following statement commending outgoing Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her historic service to the American people as Speaker over the last four years:
Four years ago, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi opened a new chapter in history when she became the first female Speaker of the House. In the time since, she has filled the pages of that chapter with countless achievements on behalf of the American people. Speaker Pelosi fought hard to increase the minimum wage, expand college aid, enhance and improve services for veterans and boost fuel efficiency standards. Her leadership in passing the Recovery Act, Affordable Care Act, Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act, expansion of health care for children, Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, Wall Street reform and other key legislation ensure that her term as Speaker will be remembered as a time when the foundation was established for an era of greater progress, security, justice, fairness and prosperity for the American people.
Under Speaker Pelosi’s leadership, the House of Representatives became the ‘people’s’ House again – pursuing policies that put middle class families, students, workers, parents, children and seniors first. Speaker Pelosi’s guiding light during her Speakership – for every policy she and her caucus pursued – was what would improve the quality of life for the America people, their families and future generations. As people soon learned, Speaker Pelosi was savvy, tough and arguably more successful in pursuit of her policy goals than virtually any House Speaker who came before her.
What Speaker Pelosi and Democrats achieved over the past four years has fundamentally improved the quality of life for Americans across the country, and has restored the promise of the American Dream for millions of Americans and their families. Speaker Pelosi herself achieved that dream – overcoming long odds and historical precedent to attain one of the highest positions in government – and it is a fitting legacy that she will have opened the door of opportunity for so many others.