Dear Nancy Pelosi: take away the GOP’s favorite toy to win in November


The top three Democratic leaders in the House are in their late 70s. Minority leader Nancy Pelosi is 77 years old, Democratic whip Steny Hoyer is 78 and assistant minority leader Jim Clyburn is 77 years old. The Democratic Party has an age problem. On the Senate side, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is 66.

The current Democratic top contenders for 2020 are Vice President Joe Biden, 75, Bernie Sanders, 76, and Elizabeth Warren, 69.

Miles Mogulescu snarkily, but accurately noted at the Huffington Post, Democratic Leadership Looks Like Old Soviet Politburo:

What does a professional sports team do after 6 straight losing seasons? Among other things, it usually fires the coach and looks for new blood, new leadership, and new strategies.

But not if you’re the minority House and Senate democratic leadership… Or the Politburo of the Soviet Communist Party shortly before the collapse of communism.

Instead, the failed, and increasingly geriatric leadership holds onto its fading power with increasing tenacity.

I’m sorry, but NO. It’s time to thank them for their years of dedicated service to their country and give them their gold watch and retirement party. To paraphrase President John F. Kennedy, it is “time to pass the torch to a new generation” of Democratic leadership in the Congress.

Once again, the GOP campaign this fall will focus on demonizing Nancy Pelosi, exposing the GOP as a sexist and misogynist political party hostile to women, Pelosi is the star of GOP attack ads, worrying Democrats upbeat about midterms, but then we already knew this. It is an old and tired attack, but it works with the simpletons in the GOP base.

If Nancy Pelosi wants Democrats to take back the House and to keep the Senate closely divided, the single most effective move she can make is to neutralize the GOP’s tired old sexist and misogynist demonizing attacks on her by announcing that she will not seek the speakership in January if Democrats take back the House.

The next most effective move she can make is to not anoint her successor, but to leave the leadership race wide open and to simply state that it is “time to pass the torch to a new generation” of Democratic leadership in the Congress. Don’t give the GOP a new target to demonize.

Take away the GOP’s favorite toy. Neutralize their campaign.

If the GOP doesn’t have Nancy Pelosi to demonize anymore, what do they have? Nothing.

The Democratic voter base, which is much younger and more diverse than its aging white leadership will  then be energized to turn out to vote in even greater numbers this November for younger, more diverse leadership.

Dear Nancy Pelosi: For the good of your party, and for the love of your country, you know in your heart this is the right thing to do. Your sacrifice is your ultimate act of patriotism. Make us proud. Please do the right thing. On to victory!

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  1. Ms. Pelosi responds…

    Nancy Pelosi Verified account

    I have made some very powerful, rich enemies because I have been highly instrumental in passing Dodd-Frank, a big energy bill, and the Affordable Care Act which has extended health care to over 20 million people and protected over 130 million with pre-existing conditions.

    12:21 PM – 10 Aug 2018


    The special interest, dark money groups are relentlessly spending millions spreading falsehoods about me because they and Republicans in Washington have nothing to run on. They’re bankrupt of ideas.

    But I’m focused on winning big for the people.


    My faith is renewed every time I speak with a woman marching for her right to access reproductive care.

    My faith is renewed every time I see families standing up for their immigrant neighbors against discriminatory and inhumane “zero-tolerance” policies.


    My faith is renewed when veterans and people with disabilities band together to lead the fight to protect our care and expand Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.


    My faith is renewed every time I travel somewhere new and see factory workers, teachers, farmers, small business owners, and people from all walks of life coming out to do whatever they can to help.


    Politics can be discouraging, especially right now. But we can change that — by continuing to inspire one another, by being there for one another and never losing faith.


    We have to stay focused and show up at the polls. We have to make sure every person we can reach gets to the polls, too, because so much is at stake right now. –NP

  2. Misogyny and ageism should not determine who becomes Speaker of the House. Nancy has not brought a bill out unless there is the backing to pass it. Her experience and ability to rally others behind causes without scandal or corruption should outshine ANY push to shove her aside. There are no youngsters YET to take up the torch and lead. They need her as a model. Of course she is hated and a target, she is effective.

    • To use a sports analogy, is it “ageism” when a seasoned veteran quarterback whose physical abilities are declining is replaced by a rookie phenom draft pick out of college who leads his team to wins? You are about to see real-life examples of this in the upcoming NFL season. It is one thing to be nostalgic for and appreciative of a quarterback who has led your team to victory in past seasons, but this game is all about winning now. The defense of American democracy depends upon it. If the GOP holds the House and Senate, Trump will be unchained to do whatever he wants, and we will have an autocracy. This is a must-win scenario, don’t kid yourself.

      For those who say that the Democrats do not have capable younger leaders waiting in the wings it is because you have not taken the time to learn who they are. Just one example you see on your TV almost every day is Adam Schiff of California. The Democratic Party needs to do a better job of highlighting their members’ profiles in the media to give them public exposure. That, in part, is the fault of the current leadership who are not moving their bench players into starting positions. Democrats also need to do a better job at developing their farm team system at the state government level. Redistricting is only two election cycles away for 2022.

  3. Nancy chased Anthony Weiner out of town even though (at the time) he’d broken no laws, for the good of the party.

    She has done some great work, but it’s time for her to step down for the good of the party.

  4. You think the GOP cares whether we like their leadership? I think we should give them the same degree of concern regarding ours. That said, they are all getting rather old. I would love to see a good leadership tussle when we take the majority this November.

  5. They will demonize ANY Democratic leader. Daschle, Pelosi, Reid, Ironic, considering the gross hypocrisy of McConnell, the odiousness of Gingrich, the faux-intellectual liar, Ryan, the perverted Hastert, etc.

  6. It’s interesting that this issue cuts across ideological lines. There are just fewer and fewer people comfortable with Pelosi not leaving the stage. AZBM’s concluding paragraph is dead on.

  7. Paul Krugman (age 65) weighs in…

    Paul Krugman Verified account

    The GOP’s success in demonizing Nancy Pelosi is remarkable and depressing. By any standard I can think of she’s been the most effective legislative leader in decades, instrumental in defending Social Security and expanding health care 1/

    9:57 PM – 9 Aug 2018

    12h12 hours ago

    There’s been no breath of personal scandal, which is amazing given the GOP machine’s ability to manufacture such things out of thin air. And compare her with recent Republican leaders! 2/

    12h12 hours ago

    Newt Gingrich was a blowhard who shut down the government in a fit of pique; Dennis Hastert molested teenage boys; Paul Ryan is a poseur whose only achievement is a budget-busting tax cut that isn’t even popular 3/

    12h12 hours ago

    Yet Pelosi is ” controversial”. Why? Two obvious things: she’s a Democrat, and she’s a woman. Oh, and for whatever reason the media have never liked her. But I repeat myself. 4/

    • I agree with the AZBlueMeanie, that Nancy Pelosi and several others have aged out of their positions and should be passing the torch.

      But Krugman’s defense of Ms. Pelosi is interesting. It is as though no one else could possibly pick up the mantle and defend Social Security or expand healthcare. Or else it’s that she’s entitled to this position until SHE is ready to give it up and we should be grateful for her.

      These people, including people like Krugman, live in a bubble. And I wouldn’t be looking for any of these folks to give up anything voluntarily.

      They’re like this…

      • Liza, you must have a very strange concept of “defense”. Krugman has reported some history about several Republicans and made a pretty noncontroversial statement about Pelosi; that’s hardly a defense.

        • “By any standard I can think of she’s been the most effective legislative leader in decades…”.

          Krugman defends Pelosi in his tweet thread responding to the question (should Pelosi stay or go?) being discussed now in social media and elsewhere.

          Krugman has 4.48 million followers on Twitter. His intent here is to influence, that’s what he does.

        • Here it is, Bill. Nancy is trending. Even @realDonaldTrump weighs in, tries to be cute…

          Donald J. Trump Verified account
          2h2 hours ago

          Democrats, please do not distance yourselves from Nancy Pelosi. She is a wonderful person whose ideas & policies may be bad, but who should definitely be given a 4th chance. She is trying very hard & has every right to take down the Democrat Party if she has veered too far left!

  8. Excellent article that echos my thoughts. The GOP has put a target on Nancy Pelosi’s back and will use it as they did for Hilliary. For them and independent voters it works. Get this information to the leadership as it is very important.
    It must come from us as they know what is happening and it is critical that changes are made to keep the GOP and Trump from winning the midterms.

  9. I too think it’s time to have younger Democratic leadership in Congress and running for the Presidency.
    But I think it is inaccurate to say the Repubs will have “nothing”, or no one, to “demonize”. Trump has already taken quite a few shots at Maxine Waters and they will find others as the races develop.

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