House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) broke the record for the longest speech on the House floor Wednesday after speaking for eight hours about the importance of voting on immigration reform.
— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) February 7, 2018
Pelosi’s marathon speech comes among intense debate over legislation to reform the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The TLDR version: Pelosi wants to pressure House Speaker Paul Ryan into a House debate and vote on DACA before the March 6 deadline after little progress has been made so far. Senate Leader Mitch McConnell’s promise that an immigration bill would be brought to the Senate floor – Pelosi wants that same promise.
“Why should we in the House be treated in such a humiliating way when the Republican Senate leader has given that opportunity in a bipartisan way to his membership?” Pelosi said. “What’s wrong? There’s something wrong with this picture.”
While Pelosi was speaking, Senate leaders reached a two-year budget deal that includes billions of dollars for military and domestic spending – allowing for Congress to focus on issues other than the budget before the anticipated midterm election. President Donald Trump threw his support behind the agreement via Twitter.
The Budget Agreement today is so important for our great Military. It ends the dangerous sequester and gives Secretary Mattis what he needs to keep America Great. Republicans and Democrats must support our troops and support this Bill!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 7, 2018
Pelosi, however, does not support the deal, and continued her speech against it, citing the bill’s lack of immigration reform. Pelosi’s speech included several stories of DACA recipients that an aide passed to her throughout the day that she would cite as reasons why immigration reform needed to get done.
During her closing remarks, Pelosi took the time to thank the individual members of her caucus who had sat in the chamber to show support along with the “eloquent Dreamers” who shared their stories with Pelosi so she could share them with the House.
“With that, I yield back,” Pelosi said with laughter and among Democratic applause a little after 6:10 p.m. EST.