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Ohio Democrat announces bid to challenge Nancy Pelosi

Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio announced Thursday afternoon that he’s running for House minority leader, challenging long-time Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi.

“While having a position in Democratic leadership has never been my life’s ambition, after this election I believe we all need to re-evaluate our rules within our Caucus, the Democratic Party, and our country. That is why I am announcing my run for Minority Leader of the Democratic Caucus and humbly request your support,” Ryan wrote in a letter obtained by CBS News.

Ryan, 43, said he has spent hours talking to his Democratic colleagues who he said all agree, “What we are doing right now is not working.”

“Under our current leadership, Democrats have been reduced to our smallest congressional minority since 1929. This should indicate to all of us that keeping our leadership team completely unchanged will simply lead to more disappointment in future elections,” he said.

The Ohio Democrat said he plans to spend the next few weeks proposing policies and ideas to help energize the Democratic base and that oppose president-elect Donald Trump’s agenda.

“I expect the entire Caucus to hold me accountable. That is why if I am successful, I will not serve again without the support of two-thirds of the Caucus,” he said.

The announcement comes a few days after Pelosi announced to the Democratic caucus that leadership elections were being postponed until after Thanksgiving on Nov. 30. They were originally scheduled for Thursday, but many Democrats advocated delaying them so lawmakers could reflect on their losses in this election and evaluate how they need to change.

Ryan has served in Congress since 2003 and currently serves on the House Appropriations and Budget Committees. He represents a large district in northeast Ohio that covers areas like Akron and Youngstown.

Pelosi, 76, has served in the House since 1987 and has served as Democratic leader since her party won back control of the House in 2007. 

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