Obama’s efforts to govern “from the center” (at least when it comes to economics) are getting heat from Nancy Pelosi.
Past Speakers – most notably Democrat Tip O’Neill, whose intraparty bouts with Jimmy Carter were legendary – have squandered similarly powerful party perches when they’ve turned on the Executive Branch. . . .
Still, even though Obama has an approval rating roughly three times the size of Congress’s, Pelosi has shown herself unwilling to quietly execute Obama’s agenda the way former Speaker Dennis Hastert did President George W. Bush’s. Back then, House Republicans didn’t openly revolt against President Bush until the sixth year of his Administration, bitterly but quietly swallowing early bipartisan programs like the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan and No Child Left Behind.
To that extent, one has to hand it to Pelosi, I guess. However, the article also suggests it could be a “good cop”/”bad cop” strategy to appease the liberal and moderate wings of the Democratic Party.
“Is it your fault in some ways,” pressed a reporter at Pelosi’s weekly press conference last Thursday, “that Barack Obama’s first vote was so partisan and not bipartisan?”
Pelosi snapped back: “I didn’t come here to be partisan. I didn’t come here to be bipartisan. I came here, as did my colleagues, to be nonpartisan, to work for the American people, to do what is in their interest.”
What does that mean? The claim might carry some merit if were not coming from one of the most radical members of the House of Representatives.