While they’ll maintain control of the House, Democrats saw their majority in the lower chamber narrow significantly after last week’s elections. Now, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) seems to be resorting to intimidation tactics to keep the GOP on guard.
According to the Washington Examiner, Pelosi announced Friday that Democrats will have “more power” with one of their own in the White House after what Donald Trump has called a “rigged” presidential election — and Republicans, especially Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), will soon see their “leverage” lost.
“Whether you’re in the minority or majority, if the president is of your party, you have more power,” the California lawmaker said Friday, according to the Examiner.
“Mitch McConnell is going to find out…not having Donald Trump in the White House is going to change his leverage, and that dynamic,” Pelosi added.
“We are close”
McConnell, for his part, has long been a steadfast Republican who isn’t willing to play Pelosi’s political games — and there’s no sign of that changing following his recent re-election. Still, the House speaker is doing all she can to make the best of the situation that she and her fellow Democrats now find themselves in.
It’s a situation that can only be described as dire for Dems. While the votes are still being tallied in some places, the latest numbers indicate Republicans have already flipped more than half a dozen House seats red.
“[A]fter all the votes are counted,” ABC News reports, Democrats “could wind up with the slimmest House majority in 20 years.”
While Pelosi maintains that won’t be an issue with a Democrat in the White House, Republicans say their opponents’ net losses will come with some serious consequences — including not being able to pursue their radical, far-left agenda.
“We are close enough now that we can control the floor with a few Democrats joining with us,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, said during a recent appearance on Fox News, according to Newsmax.
A look ahead
McCarthy is not out in left-field here. There is reason to believe that some Democrats might unite with House Republicans against more progressive measures: in the days following the election, many moderate Dems placed the blame for their poor performance on radical ideas coming from their caucus’ far-left wing.
The rift may even be enough to cost Pelosi her speakership, McCarthy argues. “To become Speaker you have to have 218 votes on the floor,” he told Fox, according to Newsmax. “When Pelosi went up for that vote two years ago, there were 15 Democrats who voted against her. Ten of those Democrats will be coming to Congress. Those 10 vote against her again, she will not be Speaker of the House.”
As far as the upper chamber, questions of who controls the Senate have come down to two runoff elections in Georgia that will be held in early January. Democrats would have to win both of those races to tie for the majority in the upper chamber, according to USA Today; in that case, it would be the vice president — ostensibly Kamala Harris — who would cast the tie-breaking vote.