I vocally supported Tim Ryan’s challenge to Nancy Pelosi on this forum two years ago after a fourth consecutive election where the Democrats under her leadership failed to take back the House. I vocally support returning the gavel to her today. Nancy Pelosi is an excellent fundraiser, vote counter, whip, and policy architect. She successfully torpedoed George W Bush’s social security privatization scheme in 2005 from the Minority. She marshaled ACA through a far more conservative Democratic house caucus in 2009. Pelosi has her flaws. She is a lousy campaigner, party spokesperson, and grassroots leader.
In 2018 she showed remarkable confidence in her strengths and avoided her weaknesses. She largely avoided public appearances by staying in DC and focusing on what she could do from behind the scenes to win the majority. She has made it very clear that electorally unpalatable ideas like impeachment are off the table, but bipartisan infrastructure bills, immigration reform, health care cost controls, and expanding Medicare and Social Security are on the table. At this time of intense polarization, it is essential to unite behind the leader and send a proven GOP fighter back to the table to lead the Democrats in resisting Trump and nudging him on issues like infrastructure and prescription drugs where he could do the right thing.
Pelosi should appoint younger and more diverse members of the caucus to leadership. She should welcome constructive criticism from the likes of Tim Ryan and Conor Lamb who have their pulse on the parts of the country the party lost-and just took back-from the clutches of Trumpism. She should listen to Joe Kennedy and Seth Moulton about what needs to be done to create an inspiring governing agenda that unites the country behind a spirit of service leadership in the tradition of Jack and Bobby Kennedy. She should make it far clearer when she intends to exit stage left and let someone succeed her. Only after the work of blocking the Trump agenda and electing a Democrat to replace him is complete. As Trump himself conceded in a rare show of bipartisan humility, she earned this victory and deserves to be Speaker. No Democrat should stand in her way.