Boehner and Obama are Going to Need Nancy Pelosi’s HelpPosted: July 21, 2011 | |
I wonder if it ever dawned on the men who cut Nancy Pelosi out of their early Debt meetings that they would be needing her help to pass a bill down the road? The LA Times has a major article about the situation today.
As the clock ticks down toward a possible government default, it appears to be less and less likely that a package can be crafted that will appease the large bloc of House conservatives who either oppose raising the debt ceiling on principle or won’t vote to hike it without massive cuts in federal spending.
That means that Pelosi, the former speaker who presides over a shrunken Democratic minority in the House, likely will come into play. Any plan that passes the Senate, be it the fallback option by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell or a more ambitious proposal like the one being crafted by the so-called Gang of Six, will only be able to pass the House if Democratic votes push it over the finish line.
At least 80 Republicans have said they oppose the McConnell plan; therefore, at least 60 Democrats would have to vote yes for the bill to pass the House. Many Republicans have also rejected the “Gang of Six” plan. That puts Nancy Pelosi back in the catbird seat.
The Californian hasn’t been in this position very often this year. The Republican rout last November crippled Democrats in the House. She surprised many by deciding to stay on as minority leader, choosing to remain a lonely progressive voice in a chamber swept by “tea party” fever. The large GOP majority means that Democrats are rarely a legislative factor — and Pelosi has lost her status as conservatives’ Public Enemy No. 1.
That also has meant that the White House hasn’t had much use for her either. Earlier this month, she appeared blindsided by reports that President Obama was considering tinkering with Medicare and Social Security as a means of reaching a deficit-reduction deal with Speaker John Boehner. But she quickly became a ringing voice on the left pushing back on the proposal.
Revenge is sweet, and I hope Pelosi remembers that when the President and the Speaker come calling. Don’t believe a word they say, Nancy! We need you to stand strong on Social Security, Medicare, and taxing the rich at least a little bit.