Congresswoman and Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus Linda Sanchez says it is time for former House leader Nancy Pelosi to bow out of Congress. Sanchez said of the Democrat Party: “I think there comes a time when you need to pass that torch.” She then said four words Pelosi sure was not expecting to hear: “I think it’s time.”

Per the Washington PostA senior House Democrat said Thursday that it’s time for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and two top lieutenants to prepare to step down and make way for the next generation of lawmakers in her caucus.The comments by Rep. Linda T. Sánchez (Calif.) (D), who as vice chairman of the House Democratic Caucus ranks fifth in the 194-member body, are the most explicit by a senior congressional Democrat and a member of the California congressional delegation about Pelosi’s political future. Sanchez mentions the names of a couple other senior Democrats who should soon seek retirement:

On Thursday, Sánchez signaled in a television interview that the generational rift remains. 

“I do think it’s time to pass a torch to a new generation of leaders, and I want to be a part of that transition,” Sánchez said on C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” in an interview conducted by reporters with The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. “I want to see that happen. I think we have too many great members here that don’t always get the opportunities that they should. I would like to see that change.”

Pressed to clarify her comments, Sánchez went further and said House Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer (Md.) and House Assistant Minority Leader James E. Clyburn (S.C.), who have been part of Pelosi’s leadership team for more than a decade, also should prepare to step down.

“They are all of the same generation, and, again, their contributions to the Congress and the caucus are substantial. But I think there comes a time when you need to pass that torch. And I think it’s time,” she said.