The Politico, so for those of you avoiding clicks, you’ve been warned:
In the jittery days following Scott Brown’s Senate victory, Nancy Pelosi was eager to resurrect comprehensive health reform. But first, she had to get past longtime ally Rahm Emanuel, who was counseling President Barack Obama to consider a smaller, piecemeal approach.
During a mid-February conference call with top House Democrats, Pelosi made it clear she would accept nothing short of a big-bang health care push – dismissing the White House chief of staff as an “incrementalist.”
Pelosi even coined a term to describe Emanuel’s scaled-down approach: “Kiddie Care,” according to a person privy to the call.
Pelosi’s remark was more than just a diss. It sent a clear signal to House leadership that Pelosi wouldn’t compromise – and it coincided with Obama’s own decision to renew his push for an all-encompassing bill after weeks of confusion and discussion.
So… Do you think you’d be seeing puff pieces in Dick Cheney’s personal diary, the Politico, if the bill had failed? And puff pieces about Nancy Pelosi, of all people?
This is what I have never understood about those who voted yes the first time around but were then spooked on purely political matters (and not the actual content of the bill). The Republicans simply are going to oppose you no matter what (as Blanche Lincoln is learning, years of tongue-kisses to the GOP doesn’t amount to a bucket of warm spit), and if the bill passes, the entire narrative changes. For everyone. And the way the teabaggers are playing along, throwing out racial epithets and yelling faggot while screaming about taking matters into their own hands, they are providing the perfect frame for this comeback story.
As an aside, I think when people feel comfortable to talk on record, meaning years from now, I think it is going to turn out that the toughness of Nancy Pelosi and the patience of Obama are what saved his Presidency. She might turn out to be the best partner he has in all of DC, and will probably, depending on what happens, go down as one of the greatest speakers in recent memory. Every time she needs the votes, she gets them.