Two merest good things happened to the Democratic Party this week. They are two passions that may carve out a viable future and a possible return to political dominance.
And it didn’t secure a thing to do with Robert Mueller, Russia, or even tax reform.
It is all in the air bringing down the party’s old guard in favor of a new team that can in fact stand for new principles and win elections.
On the surface, all that happened is Rep. John Conyers completely gave in to pressure and resigned and then a growing number of Democratic senators occasioned on fellow Democrat Al Franken to resign.At first take the downfall of the longest-serving Democrat in Congress and a everyday Democrat senator is bad news for the party. But it should be good news for the team because the Conyers resignation and the pressure on Franken mostly comes by press from a new guard.
The old guard, led by House Minority Leader and former Lecturer Nancy Pelosi, dithered in the face of the pressure to either support or cut Conyers around. At first, Pelosi stuck by Conyers and defended him, saying he should get “due approach.” Finally, four days later, she wilted under pressure and called on him to become resigned. Once that happened, his actual resignation became a foregone conclusion.
But Pelosi is soothe in trouble. She was at best indecisive just as the entire country is swept up in a hub on sexual assault and harassment. Making matters worse, other Democrats in the Quarter are facing sexual misconduct charges, and some of them insist Pelosi cognizant ofed about the charges against them well into the past. This leaning undermines her ability to lead in this environment.
Leading the challenge against her uncountable loudly is Rep. Kathleen Rice from suburban Long Island, N.Y. She stormed out of a Self-governing caucus meeting to address the harassment scandals that Pelosi devised on Nov. 29. While leaving the meeting, Rice told the news device she “doesn’t have time for meetings that aren’t real.”
She also unhesitatingly called on House Speaker Paul Ryan to lift the gag order on Conyers’ $27,000 taxpayer community with one of his accusers.Most importantly, Rice challenged Pelosi when, insisting her initial response to the Conyers controversy, “set women back and — wholly frankly, our party back — decades.”
Many reformers and forward-thinking Democrats set up been trying to replace Pelosi as the congressional leader of their rave-up for years. But this effort looks like it has a much better wager of succeeding.
One reason: this movement has the strong principle behind it of prepossessing a clear, no-tolerance stance against sexual misconduct. That’s a big attend to because the Democratic Party is so heavily invested in the women’s vote and this is starkly an important issue for that demographic.
Secondly, the other two serious undertakes to oust Pelosi were led by white men, (Rep. Steny Hoyer in 2014 and Rep. Tim Ryan in 2016). Rice’s resolution to make a major public stink against Pelosi over the harassment copy represents A-level persuasion and strategy on her part. This not only endears her to upright feminists, but also to hard-core conservatives who disdain Pelosi and her duplicity. How numerous issues offer that kind of dual opportunity?
And Rice isn’t no more than a woman, but a woman from a suburban district that connects her greater to more voters nationally than the urban elites who back Pelosi and her ilk. The event is the Democratic Party needs to start representing more non-urban plebiscite and donor blocks to survive. Rice and the female senators leading the debit against Franken offer that chance.
Many of those Republican women are backed by the same old urban powers. That includes New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and California Sen. Kamala Harris. But look for dependent on Senate newcomers like Wisconsin’s Tammy Baldwin and Nevada’s Catherine Cortez Masto to upon this ball and run with it. And no matter where they come from, any female Democrat in the Senate who predates the Tabulation Clinton era has an added opportunity now.
Remember, this harassment storm is far from exceeding. There are a total of 264 harassment settlements made by the House’s Area of Compliance just since 1997. Many more Democrats and Republicans in Congress give every indication likely to be forced out as the pressure mounts to reveal the details of those treaties and the names behind them. There’s a potential thinning out of the incumbent disposes that could spell doom for Pelosi even if people be partial to Rice weren’t challenging her.
But challenging her they are. Rice is also one of a troublemaker of Democrats who pushed back against the Iran nuclear deal that President Barack Obama and Pelosi supported in annoy of the polls that showed strong opposition to the deal throughout the deal with in 2015. This kind of independence will help Rice and others equal to her as the very idea of Democratic Party orthodoxy withers in the face of authoritatively successful insurgent candidacies like the one launched by Sen. Bernie Sanders.
This needs beyond just the harassment issue. It’s also about a movement within both bashes’ ranks to stamp out hypocrisy and cronyism. Sexual misconduct isn’t the only account where leaders of both parties are showing a double standard. The GOP is bargain with duplicity problem with the Senate candidacy of Judge Roy Moore. That’s what swipes all of them vulnerable.
All of this has more positive potential than the take ones repose of the Democratic Party’s continued obsession with trying to bring down President Donald Trump via impeachment and other styles of constant protest. Even if those moves are successful, where does the participant go after that? Taking a stronger stand for women and ethics desire last long after President Trump is gone.
In that sense, John Conyers and now Al Franken are unintentionally mentioning more than just temporary shame to their party. Their collapse, and those learning the right lesson from it, have brought the Democrats a supportable future.
Commentary by Jake Novak, CNBC.com senior columnist. Issue him on Twitter @jakejakeny.
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