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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Democratic Rep On Pelosi: 'She’s taken us this far'-- Yup, She Took You Right Off The Cliff

Representative Mike Honda (D-Calif.) believes Nancy Pelosi has the right to lead the Democratic minority next year because of her leadership as Speaker of the House over the last four years. He says "She’s taken us this far."

Midterm elections saw the biggest turnover in Democratic seats to Republicans in over 70 years, giving control of the House of Representatives to Republicans.

Nancy Pelosi presided over that, in fact, pushing the Obama/Pelosi/Reid agenda gave them full control of what bills saw the light of day, what proposals were considered and what bills passed to go to Obama's desk to be signed.

Honda is correct, Nancy Pelosi has taken Democrats exactly where they are today with top Democratic leaders fighting over the positions and some Democrats having stated clearly that the party needs new leaders, fresh faces, new ideas and a change of direction since the American public so overwhelmingly rejected them and what they have done over the last four years they have been in control and the last two years since Barack Obama has been President.

After having lost the position of Speaker of the House, many thought Nancy pelosi would step down totally, but she decided not to and stated her intent to run as the Democratic minority leader of the House.

Some Democrats cheered, others groaned and are imploring the party not to vote on that issue immediately wanting time to understand the message voters sent them loud and clear.

Letter from Reps. Marcy Kaptur (D- Ohio) and Peter Defazio (D-Oregon) to Democratic leadership: (Via CNN)

Dear Democratic Leadership:

Our Caucus should come together next week and listen to the members who lost, the members who won narrowly close elections, and the remaining members of the caucus. We should hear their stories about what worked and what was not successful because if we do not to learn from our losses we will remain in the minority until we do learn.

Following the loss of our majority, we should fully understand the causes of our historic losses before we begin the process of rebuilding. We believe leadership elections should take place in December after our Caucus has had the opportunity to hear from each other and our concerns.

We cannot ignore the historical results of these elections. At a minimum, we lost 60 seats, with a few races still to call. According to the exit polls, we lost a majority of both male and female voters, reversing the last four years of Democratic gains. Two years ago, President Obama won a majority of the female vote by 13 points. We also lost a majority of voters over 30 years of age, including an 18 point margin for seniors. We lost the independent vote by 16 points, compared to President Obama’s 8 point margin. Finally we lost a majority of voters earning more than $50,000 a year.

Considering these disturbing exit polls, we believe we should not rush to elect a leadership slate next week, but rather spend more time to understand these historic losses. Before we chart a new path forward, we need to understand where we erred to avoid repeating past mistakes.

There is no pressing need to elect our leadership so soon after the election. We should take the Thanksgiving break to reflect on the Caucus discussions and talk with our constituents. We can then return in December to elect our leadership team. Heading into a Presidential election cycle, we believe our Caucus would benefit from a more thoughtful discussion, prior to leadership elections.

We are not endorsing or opposing any leadership candidate with this letter, but we are seeking more time for a more thoughtful discussion with everyone in the same room. America expects us to take this moment and draw the best from it in her interest. Our fates our tied together. With the economy predominant in all polls, the public knows we can do so much better for our nation. We should be given more than two weeks to understand what happened and select our leadership who will be charged with restoring our majority.

Emphasis mine.

Democrats such as Representative Jason Altmire (D-Pa.)believes the leadership under Nanacy Pelosi is one of the reasons Democrats saw such a loss in 2010 and thinks Democrats need a new leader and a change of direction. Altmire stated last week "It is inescapable that the message that was sent by the American people is they want a change in direction. And a change in direction means a change in leadership."

One aide tells The Hill that younger Democratic members are becoming frustrated at the older Democratic politicians for not understanding that "new faces", "new ideas" are needed.

The American public made it crystal clear that it doesn't want the same old same old from Democrats but wants them to change course, a phrase Democrats should be very familiar with by now since they have used it so often in the past about Republicans.

Doesn't look like that is likely to happen.

Pelosi, Hoyer and Clyburn have all touted their experience in their pitches to colleagues, arguing the caucus needs “tested” leadership to fight Republican attempts to roll back Democratic accomplishments of the last two years. And supporters of the current leadership team say that proven experience is more important than bringing in new blood.

The question here is, will the new faces, the bright would-be rising stars of the Democratic party, cave and allow the older generation to continue to ignore that Americans saw their so-called achievements as betrayals or will the younger members fight to not allow themselves to be dragged off the cliff with the old dogs that cannot seem to learn any new tricks?