As Election Day drew near, The Cook Political Report predicted that House Democrats were about to build on their majority by picking up upwards of 10 seats in the lower chamber. But that’s not how things worked out.
Far from gaining new members, the Democrats’ stronghold on the House has all but collapsed, leaving the party with one of the slimmest majorities in the lower chamber in decades — a fact that prompted Townhall’s Matt Vespa to suggest that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) better “have that Advil ready.”
Writing Sunday, the columnist said Pelosi’s majority had “been whittled down to a nub,” and Dems are going to be facing the consequences of that for at least the next two years.
“Liberal and unhinged”
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has taken things a step further, suggesting that Pelosi’s speakership could be at risk with Democrats holding just a small lead in the lower chamber. But Vespa, for his part, doubts that.
“It sounds nice,” he wrote Sunday, “but we’ve heard this before. Pelosi always makes her challenges run off like scared wombat. She also controls access to the war chest, which Democrats running will need in a midterm.”
Still, the columnist did question whether Pelosi will be able to hold the competing ideological factions of her caucus together, noting that her left wing is now “more liberal and unhinged overall.”
“They shouldn’t go crazy with defund the police antics and the like,” Vespa explained, “but they probably will.” If so, it’s likely to threaten Dems’ support among suburban moderates who already barely gave Dems their gavel back this election season.
“Good luck, Nancy”
It’s a fact that even Democrats realized as the votes were being tallied. During a leaked conference call covered by Breitbart, Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger went on a profanity-laced rant about progressives in her party who she said hurt her campaign in a moderate district with their radical messaging.
Spanberger said the party would “get f*****g torn apart” unless a more reasonable approach is adopted in 2022. “We have to commit to not saying the words ‘defund the police’ ever again,” she declared, according to Breitbart. “We need to not ever use the words socialist or socialism ever again.”
House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-CA) has also expressed reservations about Dems’ strategy, according to Breitbart, warning that if “we are going to run on Medicare for All, defund the police, [and] socialized medicine, we’re not going to win.”
Of course, those sentiments didn’t go over well with progressive “Squad” members like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who recently pushed back against criticism of calls to defund the police in particular, according to Fox News.
It all has Vespa far from confident that Pelosi will be able to keep the conflict under control in the coming months. “Good luck, Nancy,” he concluded Sunday. “You’re going to need a lot of Advil.”