While former President Donald Trump’s fans often praise him for a number of achievements, his electoral victory might earn him some criticism from conservatives, if the revelations in a new book are to be believed.
According to The Hill, a new book from USA Today reporter Susan Page reveals that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) had indicated she planned to retire from Congress prior to the 2016 election — but that all changed after Trump won.
“She was getting ready to take a breath”
In Madam Speaker: Nancy Pelosi and the Lessons of Power, Page reportedly cites 10 interviews with Pelosi as well as more than 100 interviews with the Democratic leader’s acquaintances.
At one point, Pelosi reportedly revealed to Page her intentions to retire after 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton became president.
According to the author, “Pelosi said she was getting ready to take a breath, dote on her nine grandchildren, perhaps write her memoirs.”
The speaker’s retirement would have been justified in her mind, Page wrote, because a Clinton administration would have pursued the progressive policies that she had championed during her decades on Capitol Hill.
Of course, Clinton lost to Trump, and Pelosi determined that she needed to remain in power to protect her partisan interests.
“It was actually physical”
As she told Page, the shock of learning that Trump beat Clinton “was physical; it was actually physical.”
Now that President Joe Biden is in office, it remains unclear whether Pelosi, now 81, has plans to retire anytime soon. Shortly after November’s election, however, she reiterated an earlier statement indicating that her current term as speaker would be her last.
According to a recent Center for Effective Lawmaking study, Pelosi was one of the least effective Democratic politicians in the most recent legislative session, ranking 237th out of 240.
Furthermore, she has been involved in spats with others in her own party, such as up-and-coming progressives like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). Even with a slim majority in the House, however, Pelosi has managed to keep her caucus united enough to push through several key pieces of legislation so far this year.
Even if Trump’s presidency was responsible for forestalling Pelosi’s retirement, most of his supporters are likely satisfied with the trade-off.