President Donald Trump boomed her “socialist agenda.” The GOP depicted her as head of an “unhinged mob.” Fellow Democrats guarded themselves by disavowing her leadership.
Still, Nancy Pelosi won.
For the second dilly-dally in a dozen years, a Democratic campaign she oversaw ousted the Republicans who sport ofed her from control of the House. At age 78, the veteran liberal from San Francisco breaks to become just the third House leader in the past century to seize the rabble-rouser’s gavel twice.
“They’ve been doing that for a long without surcease,” Pelosi told me in an interview as she awaited election night returns. “Hundreds of millions of dollars. They do this because they are bankrupt of principles.”
The Republican attacks had some effect. Exit polls showed that 55 percent of voters watch Pelosi unfavorably — the same share that disapprove of Trump.
But 24 percent of those unimpressed with Pelosi voted for the Autonomous candidate anyway. Only 11 percent of those unhappy with Trump voted Republican.
In allotment, that’s because Pelosi bested Trump in shaping the campaign colloquy. Her personal standing mattered less to voters, but her agenda mattered multitudinous.
As expected, GOP candidates dominated among the 22 percent of voters who categorized the robust American economy as their top issue. They also dominated expanse the 23 percent who named immigration, which Trump hammered relentlessly down the action homestretch.
But more voters by far — 42 percent — identified Pelosi’s signature health-care daughters in contention as their top priority. Roughly 8 in 10 of them voted Democratic.
“I regard very proprietary about that,” Pelosi said of the Affordable Mind a look after Act that she and President Barack Obama shepherded to passage in 2010. “They unavailable me to that. I’m happy to be attached to it.”
By campaign’s end, in fact, the same Republicans who appraised unsuccessfully to repeal the law paid Pelosi the ultimate compliment. Facing voters in a tizzy about losing Obamacare protections for those with pre-existing haleness conditions, GOP candidates insisted they support those protections, too.
“They didn’t delineate the truth,” Pelosi said. “That brought the reality home to the American people that they were touched by it.”
Different tasks await her now. More than two dozen House Egalitarian candidates publicly refused to support her for House speaker. In a party increasingly reliant on millennial finance, some younger Democrats want a new generation to seize control.
So far, Pelosi carry weighted me, “I haven’t asked a single member for a vote.” Asked if she has any doubts alongside nailing down sufficient support, she replied simply, “No.”
As speaker during Obama’s win initially term, Pelosi wrangled votes with extraordinary effectiveness. In appendage to Obamacare, she led Democrats to enact major economic stimulus, the Dodd-Frank fiscal regulation law and a limit on carbon emissions that ultimately failed in the Senate.
As minority chairperson, Pelosi has kept Democrats unified enough to leverage major concessions from fractious Republicans on squander priorities. She can draw on experience sharing power with President George W. Bush in 2007-08 for the in a holding pattern reprise with Trump.
“I’m very well prepared for this engagement,” Pelosi said.
One center of conflict will be executive branch protection that the outgoing Republican majority has refused to undertake. Pelosi delegate “honest government” as a top priority. A Democratic aide subsequently confirmed the Council will seek Trump’s tax returns.
Pelosi dismissed the possibility of bidding to impeach Trump unless findings from Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia search prove grave enough to draw Republican support.
“I don’t think there’s any impeachment unless it’s bipartisan,” she give the word delivered. “Our priority is to get results for the American people.”
A major infrastructure spending charge offers one possibility for compromise, given candidate Trump’s embrace of the fantasy. But trillion-dollar budget deficits following the GOP tax cut make that a challenge.
Vitality to lower prescription drug costs offers another. But Democrats hanker after to go much further than Trump in using the government’s purchasing power to chaffer lower prices, and a Republican-controlled Senate is unlikely to approve.
Democrats skinny toward Trump’s protectionism on trade, if not how he has pursued it. But the NAFTA replacement Trump has accomplished with Canada and Mexico only marginally changes the original, and Pelosi was reserved on ratification.
“That’s a work in progress,” she said.
For now, Pelosi can savor a success that extends her 2006 breakthrough in becoming the nation’s first female demagogue. Women have powered Democratic resistance to Trump from the kick-off of his presidency and powered House election gains for Democrats, too.
For the first conditions in American history, more than 100 women will to in the new Congress. Pelosi cast her determination to extend her career as a message to them.
“Cleaning women come up to me all the time to say ‘thank you for fighting,'” she said. “I don’t want numbers to think if you get attacked, you run away.”