Nancy Pelosi presided over a House of Representatives that passed over 400 bills in two years. That has to count for something. Remember when we used to complain about a "do nothing" Congress and gridlock not too long ago?
In my estimation, there is only one Democrat in DC that has any balls -- Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The Republicans have had a target on her back for years. Remember when they tried to force her to resign in 2009 when she claimed the CIA had mislead her and Congress about waterboarding? They ran a very public campaign attempting to discredit her. Later she was vindicated when CIA Director Leon Panetta testified to lawmakers that CIA briefers had deceived Congress on the issue of a covert counterterrorism program in 2001.
Good try, GOP, but no go. Another time they tried desperately to hurt her reputation when an unruly Democratic Representative (Eric Massa of NY) was involved in a "tickling and groping" of staffers scandal. They alleged that Pelosi had met with him before the scandal broke in February of 2010 while she claimed that was the first she had heard of it. Turns out that one of Pelosi's staffers had met with him earlier but at that time there were no allegations of wrongdoings. The whole plot to do in Pelosi really fell apart when Congressman Massa appeared on Glenn Beck's Fox TV show. It was an excruciating train wreck of an interview and agonizing watching Beck try to get to the bottom of Massa's resignation and the allegations against him to no avail. At the end a flustered Beck apologized for wasting an hour of his viewers' time.
I knew at the time that the GOP would fail again. Pelosi is a fighter. She doesn't give up easily. I am glad that she decided to stay on as Minority Leader. I also was glad to read that she recently got a measure passed in the House that would prevent taxes from rising on lower and middle-income wage earners but allow them to go up for those at higher incomes. Many concede the legislation has little chance of passing the Senate, but that never stopped Pelosi before. She stands up for what she believes in. No lame duck, she.
She is trying to hold President Obama accountable to his campaign promise of allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire for the wealthy. Of course, Republican leader John Boehner of Ohio, the future Speaker, was outraged, calling it "chicken crap", but I think anytime he is angry at Democrats, it means a good thing has happened. I believe he and the GOP are beholden to their rich donors who are demanding a tax break.
Speaker Pelosi said it best when she pointed out that the GOP don't want to extend unemployment benefits for the middle class unless they are paid for yet they want to extend tax cuts for the wealthy that are not paid for and will actually increase the deficit by $700 billion. Does that make sense, even to the Tea Party?
She may not be the greatest public speaker in the world but Pelosi's political style displays a "behind the scenes" effectiveness. Many Democratic Representatives have praised her leadership. The Republicans know that she gets things done and that is why they have been working so hard against her. I believe the legislation that she shepherded through the House (Health Care reform, student loan reform, Financial reform and more) that didn't die in the Senate with their archaic filibuster rule will eventually be good for the country and all that she has accomplished will be acknowledged some day. And the Republicans that will soon rule the House have a small window of opportunity to improve the economy and clean up DC.
Americans are restless for change. Pelosi delivered. Let's see how Boehner and company do. Will they work with the President or will we go back to gridlock? The clock is ticking.