House Democrat Margin Shrinks as Republican Representative Sworn In:
House Democrats’ majority isn’t what it was yesterday as Rep. Julia Letlow (R-La.) is sworn into office today
Letlow is replaces her husband, Luke Letlow, who died of the Covid virus earlier this year. Julia Letlow won a special election in March.
Republicans now have 212 seats in the House compared with the Democrats’ 218 seats. Democrats cannot pass future legislation if more than three members defect and the Republican Party fully opposes them.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) can only afford to lose two Democrat votes on a bill on any legislation opposed by all Democrats. It leaves Pelosi with a small room for error on bills including Biden’s infrastructure package, a future COVID-19 stimulus bill, policing bills, and gun-control legislature.
If three or more Democrats disagree with the party on more left-wing agenda items, these bills won’t pass.
Three Democrats have left the House of Representatives to join the Biden administration, including pres. adviser Cedric Richmond, (HUD) Secretary Marcia Fudge, and Interior Secretary Deb Haaland.
Last week, longtime Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) died after a battle with cancer. There is one vacant seat for Republicans after Rep. Ron Wright died in February.
4 special elections are planned in the next several months, including three in districts that were previously held by Democrats.
A runoff election in Louisiana’s 2nd Congressional District for Richmond’s seat is scheduled to April 24, as the two candidates who are facing off in a solidly Democrat district.
May 1, an election will be held in Texas’ 6th Congressional District to fill Wright’s seat.June 1, a special election will be held for the 1st Congressional District for Haaland’s seat.The election for Fudge’s seat, Ohio’s 11th Congressional District, will not be held until Nov. 2
Democrats in the House say they are still optimistic they can push through favored bills.“Frankly, we’re doing OK as Democrats as you look at this quarter,” House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said in March.
Pelosi, similarly, said, “not going to be a problem.”