Pelosi Prevails

As expected, outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has prevailed in retaining the top leadership position — a surprise move after many, if not most, pundits expected she would resign after the devastating loss of at least 61 seats and record low popularity ratings for both herself and Congress.

Six out of ten Americans polled have unfavorable views of Pelosi, who will now continue to be the face of the Democratic minority.

The vote is a triumph of the leadership, but it is a curious message for some voters who expected the Democrats to take a new course. The retention of Pelosi is consistent with the public line that the election was all about the economy and not a rejection of Democratic policies or measures like the national health care plan. Given the extremely low popularity both Pelosi and Congress, it is a risky move. What do you think?

Source: CNN

85 thoughts on “Pelosi Prevails

  1. The Dem base loves Pelosi. Period. This was a smart move. She has been an effective leader. Don’t buy The Village spin Professor Turley. They wanted her out because she got things done.

  2. I think if the approximate 420 bills that the senate is sitting on had been passed the outcome of the election may have been different.

    I see John Kyl is stopping the start treaty,its funny to me that the Republicans are trying to stop the president and give him one term,but do they realize the mess they are creating if a Republican becomes president?I don’t think so.

  3. I really don’t know. She got a lot of legislation passed, but she is very unpopular with the American people. The republicans ran against her and won. Obama is far more popular than she is. Many people think she is a spoiled biddy. Although I think she is on the side of working people, I don’t think they believe it.

  4. People like to demonize Pelosi. She wasn’t the Democrat that I was upset with. I think President Obama and his advisors bear much of the blame for losing the House. The President should have gone with the progressive changes that he had promised during the campaign and forgotten about trying to continually make compromises with the “party of no.”

    Where are we now?
    – No public option with the healthcare bill
    – No change with DADT
    – No financial reform bill with real teeth
    – No bringing of war criminal to justice

    Need I go on?

  5. This says “we are still here”, so there is a good aspect to it, because it will dampen some of the steamroller feelings.

    She will be an advocate for global climate change and global warming legislation that would certainly become extinct without her help in keeping that ideology from going extinct in the House.

  6. Elaine I think they have succeeded in demonizing her. Even some men on the left don’t like her. Her approval rating is among the lowest of elected officials.

  7. Many on the left don’t like her because she took impeachment ‘off the table’ for Bush and his war criminals.

    No one is held accountable for lying the Country into war, war crimes, theft, etc. Rich powerful people don’t go to jail unless they steal from even richer people.

  8. “Many on the left don’t like her because she took impeachment ‘off the table’ for Bush and his war criminals.”


    I’m one of those on the left that dislike her for exactly this reason.

  9. I must say; out of all the pictures I’ve seen of Nancy Pelosi, the one the Professor chose ranks among the worst. If I were running a campaign against her, I would have used the same image.

    These last two years must have been extremely hard on her.

  10. As all regular posters to this blog know, I am a Pelosi fan. The retention of Pelosi is very good news and I applaud her decision to remain in the fray.

    Her reputation will rebound when the fad of demonizing her passes … for the demonizing is built on sand and will eventually be unable to maintain itself against the truth of her accomplishments.

  11. Blouise,

    I think the reason Pelosi decided to remain as leader is that she plans to retire in 2012. I could be wrong (it happened once a long time ago, so I can’t rule it out as a possibility :)), but I think it makes sense. By doing so, she may be able to take some heat off of the other Dems, which would give the other Dem incumbents a better chance in 2012.

  12. AY,

    Paul Pelosi, her husband, has been investigated by her political enemies since she first ran in 1987. He keeps a fairly low profile where politics are concerned but any married, powerfully-successful woman would count herself among the very fortunate to have a man of Paul Pelosi’s character for a husband.

  13. BBB
    1, November 17, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    I think the reason Pelosi decided to remain as leader is that she plans to retire in 2012. I could be wrong (it happened once a long time ago, so I can’t rule it out as a possibility ), but I think it makes sense. By doing so, she may be able to take some heat off of the other Dems, which would give the other Dem incumbents a better chance in 2012.


    You could very well be right. In any case, I will be sad to see her go.

  14. I don’t quite understand why people seem to dislike Nancy Pelosi. She was disciplined enough to get 400 plus bills passed through the House and many of the bills in the House were much more progressive than their Senate counterparts. I do think the issue of taking impeachment off the table was not just her decision. I would guess that most of the leadership was against that idea. It was a mistake, but it was not just her mistake. She has been successfully demonized by a concerted Right wing Teapublican media.

  15. As someone on MSNBC said tonight, the Dems need someone who will be able to help them “hit the ground running”, and Pelosi’s the best person to help them do so.

    Pelosi will do a good job these next two years and, if she decides to call it quits in 2012, will probably exit on a high note.

    As I’ve said before, I applaud her significant accomplishments — she’s done a lot. Having said this, impeachment should have remained “on the table.” It was a serious mistake not to pursue it, in my estimation, and we’re a lesser country for it.

  16. Buddha Is Laughing
    1, November 17, 2010 at 11:21 pm
    She’s a baby eating zombie.

    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


    I love you anyway ’cause you’re green and stubborn.

  17. She had to take “impeachment off the table”. If bush had been impeached it would set a precedent for the impeachment of the current psychopath in chief for continuing and expanding the exact same foriegn policies of genocide, torture, and subjectation of a population that posed no threat to us. Why would you hold bush accountable for his abominable actions if you knew you were going to be doing the exact same thing once you were in the drivers seat?

  18. rafflaw

    My sentiments exactly. Nothing would have gotten done and certainly 400 bills, including the health bill, wouldn’t have been passed if the bloodletting that impeachment will entail had been started.

    Some adults have to be elected on the Republican side before B.&C. can be successfully prosecuted. Maybe that’s the real reason for sponsorship of the Tea Party – not many adults coming out of their efforts.

  19. Tootie, sure wish there was such a thing…
    Pelosi and Obama are as Marxist and progressive as Karl Rove on a bad hair day.

    What to do with the lunatic center of the Republican Party…
    Thought you guys was gonna secede? Take your dollies and go home already.

  20. Of course, I am totally wrong, and am so wrong that I am incapable of realizing that I am totally wrong about being totally wrong.

    At least I admit to being wrong, and to being wrong about being wrong.

    Being totally wrong, I find it useful to hurl epithets at those with whom I disagree because doing so prevents finding any means of coming to any sort of decently shared, respectful, mutual understanding.

    I find it useful to hurl epithets because, after enough epithet-hurling, we (humanity as individual persons) may, by eventual happenstance, stumble upon authenticity and kindness.

    What a catastrophic atrocity it would surely be if folks who share philosophical differences could regard one another as comparably valid persons?

    We might even sort out the contrast between dispositional (false?) attributions and situational (true?) attributions?

  21. Ekerya,

    This is going to surprise you, but I agree. Assuming of course that you think that both Bush and Obama should be investigated for any War Crimes committed during their watch and with their knowledge.

  22. Jericho:

    You know what they say about asses…uh…I mean assumptions.

    I’m not a Republican. And it is Libertarian movement leaders who support secession, not Republicans.

    Obamacare is the most recent proof of the Marxism. If that doesn’t convince you then “social” security should. Or Medicaid. Or the size of the federal budget which congress has no authority to tax us for (redistribution of wealth).

    The reason there is an economic crisis IS the Marxist programs called entitlements. There is not only no moral justification for them there is no Constitutional authority either.

    Before Marxism cane in to its own, our framers and founders knew such an idea was not only unworkable and immoral, but criminal. They just didn’t have a name for it but tyranny or despotism.

  23. Nothing would have happened if Bush had been tried . . . except the rule of law would have been restored and the Constitution obeyed. Instead, he walks free and Obama further pisses on the 4th Amendment by saying he can assassinate American citizens without due process. Bush’s crimes or Obama’s crimes, either are sufficient enough to void the social compact. But yeah, it was important to get “health care reform” passed instead that doesn’t reform a damn thing except propping up insurance companies.

    Yeah, that decision not to prosecute has had a real up side.

  24. Tootie and everyone else who trots out that tired line I present you with the definition of theft:

    “a : the act of stealing; specifically : the felonious taking and removing of personal property with intent to deprive the rightful owner of it b : an unlawful taking (as by embezzlement or burglary) of property ”

    So, unless you want to argue that taxation is illegal… No, being forced to pay taxes is not theft, anymore than having your wages garnished to pay child support is.

  25. Gyges:

    Unauthorized taxation is nothing but illegal and therefore theft. This is precisely my point.

    I submit to you the work of Frederick Bastiat.

    You can read about that here:

    Of particular note:

    “Men naturally rebel against the injustice of which they are victims. Thus, when plunder is organized by law for the profit of those who make the law, all the plundered classes try somehow to enter — by peaceful or revolutionary means — into the making of laws. According to their degree of enlightenment, these plundered classes may propose one of two entirely different purposes when they attempt to attain political power: Either they may wish to stop lawful plunder, or they may wish to share in it.

    Woe to the nation when this latter purpose prevails among the mass victims of lawful plunder when they, in turn, seize the power to make laws! ”

    The Pemocratic Party rank and file wish to participate in the “lawful plunder” (theft). No wonder so many lawyers are Democrats! This theft (plunder) is how the Democrats held congress for most of the last century: they bribed voters with handouts in order to retain their power and craft laws to ensure more of it and more redistribution of wealth.

    This is what Marxism is at its core and it is the politics of greed.

    It is only the Republican and Libertarian rank and file who want this stopped.

  26. Tootie,

    So, even though taxation is authorized by the Constitution it’s unauthorized?

    You’ll have to explain that to me.

  27. Gyges:

    I’m not talking about whether or not taxation is lawful. It is. I am talking about the unlawful uses for which we are taxed.

    If I take money from you because you owed it to me and you handed it to me or were forced to give it to me it is a lawful act by us both. If I take money from you and you didn’t owe it to me, it is an unlawful act on my part even if the law permitted it.

    If rape were legalized it would still be unlawful (in the broadest sense). Inherent in the meaning of law is that it must be lawful. Just like inherent in the meaning of truth is that it must be true.

    And that is what I am discussing.

    I don’t lawfully owe the government money for that which it does unlawfully. Furthermore, the Constitution guarantees me a protection of my property, which it violates when it takes my money for unlawful purposes like Obamacare.

    I don’t’ press the point with them too much because our government is a fascist totalitarian police-state which seeks to destroy me if I stand up for the Constitution. And I prefer to enjoy what limited freedom I have left while I work to change things.

    I’m hoping for real change instead of the old, retrograde, un-progressive, backwards thinking, mobster, barbaric and primitive Marxist thug-tate of the Democratic Party which pretends that robbery is charity and sexual assault is security.

    That change can only come if the fascist totalitarian Marxists like Obama, Pelosi, Reid, and Jay Rockefeller can be made to keep their greedy filthy hands off the alternative media: cable, talk radio, and internet.

    They do not tolerate it that those they wish to subjugate ever get the chance to speak critically about them in a forum they have controlled for over half a century: the American press and media.

    Freedom is messy. That is why Democrats feel the need to make order of it.

    That is how you kill it.

  28. Tootie:

    Correct me if I am wrong but for over a hundred years after the Constitution was ratified there were no personal income taxes on labor, except during the civil war if I remember correctly.

    I believe the Founders were against a tax on peoples labor. Which would be consistent with John Locke whom the Founders relied on.

  29. Tootie:

    “I’m hoping for real change instead of the old, retrograde, un-progressive, backwards thinking, mobster, barbaric and primitive Marxist thug-tate of the Democratic Party which pretends that robbery is charity and sexual assault is security.”

    Come on, you give mobsters and barbarians a bad name.

  30. The investigations and impeachment proceedings of President Clinton ran from August 1994 through February 1999 and quite a lot happened including putting the next to last nail in the coffin of Americans’ expectation of their governmental representatives.

    The next investigation with an expectation of impeachment of a sitting President will probably start in January 2011. And some more things will happen.

    To say that nothing will happen when/if Bush/Cheney or Obama are prosecuted is beyond my optimistic capabilites.

  31. Buckeye,

    I’m worried about what will happen if the Republicans go on a witch hunt against Obama like they did with Clinton. Using investigations and impeachment as a political weapon again, so soon after Clinton’s impeachment is going to start a pattern and the Democrats will definitely retaliate, the next time a Republican is in office.

  32. James M.

    Well, let’s do one prosecution at a time. Bush/Cheney are next in line but the stuff is going to hit the fan whoever is targeted and whenever the prosecutions start – that’s the nature of the beast.

    I’ve no doubt that tying the Clinton presidency up for 5 years caused a lack of due diligence in national security areas – and that effects all of us.

    It’s all up to AG Holder right now, and the investigations he’s started are still continuing. We’ll see what happens in the next two years, but I expect a backlash (investigations of the current administration) when/if any indictments of the previous administration are in the offing. Like I say – not enough adults are in congress to hold anyone accountable.

  33. Elaine,

    It’s not so much the power in feminine hands so much as it is the specific woman in question. “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.” By not defending the Constitution from the assaults of the neocon GOP, she failed her oath of office. I don’t care why because where she failed was a matter of holding traitors responsible and her failure to her oath for expedience/capitulation/whatever is simply not acceptable performance from any member of Congress let alone one in a leadership position.

  34. hell, she was complicit in the torture. she should be right along side Bush, Chaney, et. al.

    She knew about it and did nothing.

  35. It’s not just suspected terrorists who were deprived of their rights by the U.S. government. I am a suspected vexatious litigant and I was deprived of all my rights — my property, my liberty, my speech. I was emotionally tortured and my life was risked,– to a much lesser degree than the suspected terrorists but still not fun.

  36. Tootie,

    You said, “Or the size of the federal budget which congress has no authority to tax us for.”

    You’ll have to forgive me for assuming that you thought congress had no authority to tax us when you say just that.

    I’m not going to argue about the morality of government programs with you. We’ve been through this conversation, and I doubt either of us has anything new to say.

  37. The Constitution has no inherent authority or obligation. It has no authority or obligation at all, unless as a contract between man and man. And it does not so much as even purport to be a contract between persons now existing. It purports, at most, to be only a contract between persons living eighty years ago. And it can be supposed to have been a contract then only between persons who had already come to years of discretion, so as to be competent to make reasonable and obligatory contracts. Furthermore, we know, historically, that only a small portion even of the people then existing were consulted on the subject, or asked, or permitted to express either their consent or dissent in any formal manner. Those persons, if any, who did give their consent formally, are all dead now. Most of them have been dead forty, fifty, sixty, or seventy years. And the constitution, so far as it was their contract, died with them. They had no natural power or right to make it obligatory upon their children. It is not only plainly impossible, in the nature of things, that they could bind their posterity, but they did not even attempt to bind them. That is to say, the instrument does not purport to be an agreement between any body but “the people” then existing; nor does it, either expressly or impliedly, assert any right, power, or disposition, on their part, to bind anybody but themselves.
    – Lysander Spooner

  38. ekeyra:

    Lysander Spooner was a dysfunctional lawyer, dysfunctional farmer, and dysfunctional anarchist. His musings on the Constitution evince his lack of a fundamental understanding of law and and its role in the human condition. The Constitution was no mere contract between man and man, but rather a charter: A grant of authority and freedom from one generation to the next; a statement of principles and a vision for a great undertaking; a successor to the ideals of freedom from the Greco-Roman tradition, through Magna Charta, the Mayflower Compact, and Patrick Henry’s oration at St. John’s Church. It is more invitation than agreement, and more legacy than diktat. One that seeks our higher purposes and relies upon the better angels of our character. It exists because great men deemed it to exist. It is a guiding star and the guarantor of our freedom. If it died, as Spooner would have us believe, it would necessarily be given life again with each successive generation’s craving for human dignity, freedom, and justice.

  39. mespo, nice rhetoric, but utterly meaningless. Spooner’s argument that the constitution bound noone because it doesnt meet even the loosest requirements we would hold an actual lawful contract to, shows a deep understanding of the law. The founding fathers could not grant authority that was never theirs to grant.

  40. “mespo, nice rhetoric, but utterly meaningless.”

    Meaningless only if one is ignorant of which they speak. You are, ekeyea, ignorant of both the nature of contracts versus charters and the man whom you quote.

    Lysander Spooner, he who practiced Massachusetts law without a license or proper education, famed for both his hatred of government regulation and his desire to privatize the post office (with him as owner of the American Letter Mail Co., of course) would be simply be known as just another Libertarian whack job if he hadn’t been an published abolitionist. The nature of the Constitution as charter is just as mespo describes, Spooner’s anarchist day dreams aside. It’s a charter, not a contract, and as such Spooner’s analysis is junk. In fact, one of the synonyms of “charter” is “constitution”. The primary similarity between a contract and a charter is their legal enforceability. The primary difference is the scope of authority. The Constitution is far more than just a contract.

  41. The Lawyer’s Party ~

    This is very interesting & I never thought about it this way. Perhaps this is why so many physicians are conservatives or Republicans.


    The Lawyers’ Party by Bruce Walker ~~

    The Democratic Party has become The Lawyers’ Party . Barack Obama was a lawyer. Michelle Obama was a lawyer. Hillary Clinton is a lawyer. Bill Clinton is a lawyer. John Edwards is a lawyer. Elizabeth Edwards is a lawyer. Every Democrat nominee since 1984 went to law school (although Gore did not graduate)…

    Every Democrat vice presidential nominee since 1976, except for Lloyd Bentsen, went to law school. Look at leaders of the Democrat Party in Congress: Harry Reid is a lawyer.& Nancy Pelosi is a lawyer.

    The Republican Party is different ~

    President Bush is a businessman. Vice President Cheney is a businessman. The leaders of The Republican Revolution ~ Newt Gingrich was a history professor. Tom Delay was an exterminator. Dick Armey was an economist. House Minority Leader Boehner was a plastic manufacturer. The former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist is a heart surgeon. Who was the last Republican president who was a lawyer?

    Gerald Ford, who left office 31 years ago & who barely won the Republican nomination as a sitting president, running against Ronald Reagan in 1976..

    The Republican Party is made up of real people doing real work, who are often the targets of lawyers. The Democrat Party is made up of alot lawyers. Democrats mock & scorn men who create wealth, like Bush & Cheney, or who heal the sick, like Frist, or who immerse themselves in history, like Gingrich.

    The Lawyers’ Party sees these sorts of people, who provide goods & services that people want & need, as the enemies of America . And, so we have seen the procession of official enemies, in the eyes of The Lawyers’ Party…

    The USofA has 5% of the world’s population & 66% of the world’s lawyers ~ Tort (Legal) reform legislation has been introduced in congress several times in the last several years to limit punitive damages in ridiculous lawsuits such as “spilling hot coffee on yourself & suing the establishment that sold it to you” ~ also to limit punitive damages in huge medical malpractice lawsuits. This legislation has continually been blocked from even being voted on by the Democrat Party. When you see that 97% of the political contributions from the American Trial Lawyers Association goes to The Democrat Party, then you realize who is responsible for our medical & product costs being so high.:!!

  42. The Courts with or without lawyers are supposed to protect people like myself from being kidnapped by our government and held without a criminal charge like I was by DOJ for 5 months.

    If the government doesn’t have to pay punitive damages when it kidnaps citizens like myself and holds them using unpublished procedure as part of an extortionist scheme then no one within the government will be held responsible.

    The reason that the courts are so screwed up is that lawyers and directors buy insurance that will defend them when they commit crimes. The insurance for committing crimes often has a very small deductible. The insurance companies simply make arrangements with the clerks to assign a sympathetic judge and then they apparently pay the judges off. One way is to provide a credit card for the judge to use at brothels like the Denver Players.

    There is no way to regulate the insurance companies without federal regulation because they sell insurance from foreign countries over the Internet.

  43. ekeyra:

    “mespo, nice rhetoric, but utterly meaningless.”


    “A grain of real knowledge, of genuine controllable conviction, will outweigh a bushel of adroitness; and to produce persuasion there is one golden principle of rhetoric not put down in the books–to understand what you are talking about.”

    ~John Robert Seeley (British historian,1834 – 1895)

  44. In Hatfill v. Ashcroft, it was ruled that Bivens complaints for unconstitutional behavior should be prosecuted as Privacy Act complaints against the computer systems. The computer systems are supposed to protect our constitutional rights.

  45. Ekerya,

    Have you enjoyed the benefits of the Constitution? Have you ever Gotten mail?

    If so then you’ve agreed to the contract.

  46. John Brown was a murderer and a thief, but I guess that was also negated by his being an abolitionist. To bad for him the court didn’t see it that way and hung him. Just like it’s too bad that the one good, ethical position from a Libertarian whack job doesn’t negate Spooner being a Libertarian whack job who didn’t understand basic contract law let alone the Constitution.

    But at least you’re in comparable company.

  47. Must be your upper lip you’re smelling and as to that false equivalence, you made it. I compared a fatally flawed man to fatally flawed man . . . and on to your fatally flawed logic.

    And don’t fret. People may mistake you for a Christian, but no one is ever going to mistake you for educated.

  48. I called my Reps to ask why Bush had not been impeached, and at that time the Dems didn’t hold a majority.

    So then the Dems win the seats in the next election I am expecting action and instead then Nancy Pelosi says impeachment is “off the table”!!!

    I am begining to believe there is only one party in the US, the Party of Big Government.
    There’s a Dem branch and a Rep branch.

  49. Alan:

    I hope you do not posit a false choice that the economy is either in the hands of the state or the “plutocrats”.

    Most businesses in America are small businesses. The reason businesses become big is because POPULATION becomes big. The customer base is billions instead of millions and the innate response to that is bigger businesses. You don’t know that there are enough small business owners to go around who have the skills and ability to supply the needs that on very large business can (which, generally, originally represents the vision of only one or two people). In your view, there would have to (to replace the one business) be thousands if not millions of small businesses people that would have to replace what one large company is able to provide.

    That is not rational. It is fiction and fantasy because it cannot be determined ahead of time.

    You cannot reach everyone who needs something that way (except by hoping or wishing, I suppose).

    There is a myth, promoted by the greedy left, that farming is mostly big farmers. 90 percent of farms are still family owned. These small families cannot reach foreign markets like big operations can. Mess with that, even for a short period of time, and people starve to death.

    You probably condemn the big agri businesses who help feed the world populations which are not able to feed themselves. There is a place for both big and small business. Where small businesses are not able to meet needs, big business can step in fill the void.

    If I thought that Democrats hated the rich I would never see a Jay Rockefeller, a Kennedy, or a Kerry in political office. Leftists don’t hate the rich, they just hate the rich rightist and that is what all the whining is about. When China was poisoning our childrens toys, who did congress punish? The small domestic manufacturers and cottage industry operations or the big companies who manufacture overseas? They punished the little guy. And this was a Democrat congress that did it.

    It is all about greed, but it is very much about who is greedy. The poor man who wants the rich plunder for himself can be as greedy as a rich man who has no compassion.

    I’m not for lawlessness either. But I oppose theft by government as much as theft by companies or the Democrat rank and file. All of it is immoral.

  50. Tootie

    I 100% agree with you. I voted Democrat since Jimmy Carter but now I think the Democrats took my support for granted. I went to a Move On party last weekend that was billed as how to help Democrats respond to the election. I thought it would concern the party position but when I got there it seemed like friends of Congressmen wanting to preserve their good paying prestigious jobs.

    I am currently subscribing to the Wall Street Journal and loved the headline today about massive investigations of insider trading and I’m glad DOJ prosecuted Judge Camp. The way for Democrats to regain my loyalty is through aggressive criminal prosecutions to make the world safe for honest people.

  51. Ekerya,

    If you think I think you’re a Christian you’ve got a long way to go.

    I was originally going to point out that Hitler started the first anti-smoking campaign, maybe throw in a reference to the autobahn for good measure. Then I decided that I didn’t want to Goodwin the argument that early on, so thought about bringing up the fact that Genghis Khan was (for the time)incredibly tolerant of people with religions that were different than him. Then I remembered that most of the negative ideas we have about the elder Khan (who did not have a stately pleasure dome in Xanadu) were based on anti barbarian propaganda from China.

    So I settled decided on going the other route, a man we all knew was good supporting slavery. A saint somebody-or-rather sprang to mind, and so…

    Of course, I could have just said “A broken clock is right twice a day,” but cliches are so cliche.

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