Your Future House Speaker Hakeem Jeffries Schools Republicans With The ABCs Of Leadership

Early Saturday morning, Wannabe House Speaker Kevin McCarthy surrendered what remained of his dignity and presented it in a tiny, gift-wrapped box to Reps. Matt Gaetz and Lauren Boebert. Making this outcome all the more humiliating is that McCarthy teamed up with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene to achieve it.

As is tradition, Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries addressed the House before handing the gavel over to McCarthy, who’d finally won the job that he’d just ensured “hath in it no profit but the name.” Rightwing media swiftly activated “Operation Kamala” against Jeffries. Fox News declared, “Conservatives pan Jefferies (sic) ‘rambling disaster of a speech,’ yet gets high praise from left.” This rambling disaster of a headline misspelled Jeffries’s name without correction all Saturday.

Rightwingers will have a hard time rattling Jeffries, who’s so cool he could snack on ghost peppers without breaking a sweat. His remarks Saturday were a succinct statement of purpose for the incoming Democratic House minority. This is a major transition for the caucus that Nancy Pelosi had led for 20 years. McCarthy spent four days walking into rakes while Democrats remained firmly behind Jeffries, with no stunt nominations or public defections. This is a party that takes the people’s business seriously and is fit to govern. The other is chock full of nutty insurrectionists who are McCarthy’s true master.

Here’s the full speech below. Jeffries exhibits humility and grace but also the confidence of someone who knows he’s gonna keep that gavel in 2025.

Jeffries acknowledged that the unanimous support he received over 15 separate ballots wasn’t just about him as an individual leader. Democrats rightly reject cults of personality. No, instead, he described his party’s clear, unwavering support as “a showing of strength throughout the 118th Congress” and a “unanimity of purpose on behalf of the American people.”

He didn’t leave that purpose unstated, either. Here’s where he got funky.

“We will never compromise our principles,” Jeffries said. “House Democrats will always put American values over autocracy. Benevolence over bigotry. The Constitution over the cult. Democracy over demagogues.” Yes, he’s going down on Alphabet Street — and without notes! “Economic opportunity over extremism. Freedom over fascism. Governing over gaslighting. Hopefulness over hatred. Inclusion over isolation. Justice over judicial overreach. Knowledge over kangaroo courts. Liberty over limitation. Maturity over Mar-a-Lago. Normalcy over negativity. Opportunity over obstruction. People over politics. Quality of life issues over QAnon. Reason over racism. Substance over slander. Triumph over tyranny. Understanding over ugliness. Voting rights over voter suppression. Working families over the well connected. Xenia over xenophobia. ‘Yes, we can’ over you can’t do it, and zealous representation over zero sum confrontation.”

“Xenia” isn’t a reference to our beloved Lucy Lawless but rather the ancient Greek concept of hospitality. The brother’s got style.

Jeffries began his speech with generous praise for his predecessor, Nancy Pelosi, who he correctly said “will go down in history as the greatest speaker of all time.” Now, the House speakers over the past 30 years have included craven coward Paul Ryan, the Tea Party-soaked John Boehner, and literal child molester Dennis Hastert, who was still somehow a step-up from cancer-wife ditcher Newt Gingrich. This is hardly distinguished company, but Pelosi stands out among the actual greats, such as Joseph Cannon and Sam Rayburn. Her legislative achievements are well-documented, but she also has the unfortunate distinction of leading the House while under assault from insurrectionists.

It seems offensive that a moral Lilliputian like Kevin McCarthy would succeed someone as Brobdingnagian as Pelosi, but he’s shrunk so low in pursuit of his copper idol that he’s barely visible. His mark in history is but a stain. Jeffries, however, emulates his mentor, Pelosi, who elevated the speakership while McCarthy rendered it a week-long punchline (and counting).

The original post can be found on Wonkette

What do you think?