Democrat Nancy Pelosi was officially elected the new U.S. House speaker on Thursday in a majority vote by members of the House.
She defeated the Republican nominee Kevin McCarthy, winning 220 votes. McCarthy becomes the House minority leader.
As House speaker, Pelosi will regularly face off against President Donald Trump and will preside over an emboldened and energized Democratic majority that is poised to launch aggressive oversight of the President and his administration.
Pelosi also makes history as she reclaims a title she previously held when she served as the first and so far only female House speaker from 2007 to 2011.
Pelosi, in a remark shortly after being elected to the speakership, said: “We enter this new Congress with a sense of great hope and confidence for the future and deep humility.
“Our nation is at a historic moment,” she continued. “Two months ago, the American people spoke and demanded a new dawn.”
Pelosi spoke about other priorities on the Democratic agenda after her election on Thursday — describing climate change as well as income inequality as pressing problems that need to be addressed.
“We will call upon bold thinking to address the disparity of income in America, which is at the root of the crisis of confidence felt by so many Americans.
“We must also face the existential threat of our time: the climate crisis,” Pelosi said.
In a nod to the historic nature of her election, Pelosi said she felt “particularly proud” to serve as “the woman speaker of the House of this Congress which marks the 100th year of women having the right to vote.”