The Left has a tendency to feast on themselves when times get tough. After exhaustion from fighting the GOP sets in, or someone becomes “offended,” they inevitably begin to fight one another, too, and that’s exactly what’s happening right now to Nancy Pelosi.
Over the past month, a small group of Democrats have been working tirelessly to block Nancy Pelosi from speakership. As of the final week in November, a total of 17 Democratic lawmakers had vowed to work against her – even though President Trump himself agreed with her appointment just a short time ago. Yet, it seems there is fighting even within this splinter group; they can’t agree on how to proceed or work together.
Just another incident of the Left consuming itself, or concentrated effort to undermine the President’s preferences?
We have the details.
The contentious group of Democratic naysayers has actually been formulating a plan to block Pelosi since even before the midterm elections. Their efforts have continued to grow over time to 17 in total, five of which are as-of-yet unconfirmed, incoming leaders.
•(OH) Tim Ryan
•(MA) Seth Moulton
•(NY) Kathleen Rice
•(COL) Ed Perlmutter
• (OR) Kurt Schrader
• (TX) Filemon Vela
• (OH) Marcia Fudge
• (MA) Linda Sanchez
• (IL) Bill Foster
• (NY) Brian Higgins
• (TN) Jim Cooper
• (MA) Stephen Lynch
• (NJ) Jeff Van Drew
• (SC) Joe Cunningham
• (NY) Max Rose
• (NY) Anthony Brindisi
• (UT) Ben McAdams
Other Democratic leaders may step in later on, but this list is confirmed as involved as of the final week in November, 2018. All plan to vote against Pelosi in the upcoming election.
Why Target Pelosi?
Reasons given for why these Democrats want Pelosi ousted vary widely. Some leaders have issues with her political beliefs, feeling she should be more bipartisan in her approach, while others believe the Democratic House needs a “fresher face.”
A letter obtained by several news media outlets from the Democratic party clearly illustrates a desire to oust the old and bring in the new:
“We promised to change the status quo, and we intend to deliver on that promise,” it reads. “Therefore, we are committed to voting for new leadership in both our Caucus meeting and on the House floor. Our majority came on the backs of candidates who said that they would support new leadership because voters in hard-won districts, and across the country, want to see real change in Washington.”
Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-OR) is one of the people vying against Pelosi for Speaker. He explained the group’s actions as less of an attack on Pelosi as a person, or even as a politician, and more of an attempt at true change.
“I’m trying to replace the current leadership of the Democratic Party,” he explained. “We need somebody who is a fresher face, that voters don’t identify with the old establishment, who is new, that shows Democrats have chosen a new direction. We don’t want her to be the face of the party.”
Dissent Within the Rebels
The anti-Pelosi forces have also accused Rep. Seth Moulton (MA) of “freelancing” and pushing compromises with Pelosi that other leaders weren’t even aware existed. Moulton sent out a statement to Pelosi on Monday asking her to consider talks, and also said he would “leave the gavel in her hands” and allow her to make the first move.
Moulton allegedly suggested removing her top lieutenants, including Reps. Steny Hoyer of Maryland or Jim Clyburn of South Carolina. He also encouraged Pelosi to promise to serve just one term, suggesting that either would win her more support and potentially, eliminate the bids against her before the upcoming vote.
“Leader Pelosi wants to boil this down to a personal argument,” he said, “but this is so much bigger than her. It’s about the entire, stagnant, 3-person leadership team and having a serious conversation about promoting leaders who reflect the future of our caucus.”
Not Everyone Agrees
Unfortunately, Moulton’s splintering-off strategies are making some of the rebel group members very unhappy. It’s creating a confusing and chaotic back-and-forth in the Democratic party that isn’t easily understood.
One unnamed rebel expressed dismay at the group’s attempt to oust her this soon after their big win. “They don’t know what they’re doing,” he said, calling the whole idea of working with Pelosi “disjointed” and illogical. Other members of the anti-Pelosi brigade have shared similar sentiments in recent days.
Schrader outright denied Moulton’s statement was even real, despite it being published by the Washington Post. “I’m not so sure Seth has said that,” he explained. “He’s been pretty clear that it might have been his staff that mentioned all that. Because I know that he is not inclined to cut a deal with Pelosi to kill Hoyer and Clyburn.” He also quickly shut down the idea that the group would support Pelosi on the bid if she agreed not to overstay her welcome.
“No,” he said.“She would need to step down within a year and have new elections at that time for us to have any chance of retaining the majority.”
A Sign of a Fracturing Unity
While infighting has always seemed to be a bit of a Democratic specialty, it’s easy to see that the stress of winning the House is causing the party to come apart at the seams. The fact that a small group of Democrats within the Democrats can’t even agree on how to achieve the one goal they came together to complete — ousting Pelosi — is highly telling.
Outsiders continue to accuse the anti-Pelosi forces of being disorganized, incapable, and unable to work together for the greater good. Pelosi’s supporters, on the other hand, have called the small group sexist and anti-progressive. The rebels continue to show signs of being confused about what they even want from her to lend their support.
The Democratic party not knowing what it wants? That’s a story we’ve all seen before, time and time again. It’s too early to predict how this will play out in the future, but ultimately. Pelosi needs to win Wednesday’s bid and convince Democrats to support her in January, too.