Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Democratic circular firing squad.

Now that Nancy Pelosi has been reelected as the leader of the Democrats in the House, some of those Democrats who lost or who are discouraged about the chances of retaining the Democratic majority are telling us what they really think about her and her leadership. How about this complaint from one of her supposed friends?
Even Pelosi "friend" [Bill] Pascrell [N.J.] spoke before the TV cameras about failings under her leadership, saying, "We put many of our members in jeopardy by voting on bills that were never going to be taken up in the United States Senate." DeFazio, in turn, said, "The greatest failing in this Congress was that the House was basically acting as a - it enabled the White House."
Oh my. Observers have faulted Obama for outsourcing his domestic policy to Nancy Pelosi in the crafting of the stimulus plan and other domestic policies, including health care and cap and trade. Now here is one of Pelosi's allies saying that it was really the administration's fault that the House Democrats had to vote on all these policies.

Of course, once she announced that she was running for reelection as House leader, it was clear that she would win. She has the support of the California delegation, female members, and all delegates that she had given favors to or raised money for.
For those who play by Pelosi's rules, the spoils can be awesome. For anyone who steps off the line, the cold-shoulder treatment, the withholding of favors and the intimidating calls from her loyalists and key staff are legendary.

If you're a wavering member of the Democratic Caucus, it's a bad bet to cast your lot against her when she doesn't have any real competition — especially as money, staff, committee slots and office space for Democrats will shrink to a fraction of their current size in the new Congress.

There's a hangover effect, described to POLITICO by one senior Democratic aide this way: "People woke up the day after the election as afraid of Nancy Pelosi as they were the Monday before. And they shouldn't be." Of course, that aide, fearing retribution from the speaker, asked to be quoted without attribution.
The circular firing squad among the losers is never a pretty sight, but Republicans have to be enjoying this one.