Fascinating, if not unsurprising column by Politico’s JOHN BRESNAHAN today… Pelosi lays down the law with Rahm”. Apparently she has made it quite clear to Obama’s Chief of Staff-elect that there will be no back door deals with Blue Dog or moderate New Dems, thwarting Pelosi’s leadership on issues.
Citing the Bush admin’s WH leadership as the creators of policy (and aren’t they supposed to??) and the GOPs almost dutiful following on most issues (except immigration and bailouts… and campaign era ostracization…), the Speaker has laid down the law that she will not tolerate repeats of this Presidential power.
Specifically, Pelosi has told Emanuel that she wants to know when representatives of the incoming administration have any contact with her rank-and-file Democrats — and why, sources say.~~~
Pelosi “is not going to allow Obama to triangulate her,” said a Democratic source close to the leadership. “It’s not going to happen to her.”
Pelosi’s mantra, in a way, is “no surprises.” The speaker wants to be told when Reid is communicating with the Blue Dogs or other factions with her caucus, and she expects the same from Obama when he arrives in the Oval Office, said Democratic sources.
This confirmation of intended micro-management of the Oval Office by Congressional leftist leaders does little to dispel the notion that Obama was a better DNC candidate since he would be a more willing dummy to the Pelosi/Reid ventroliquist than a willful Hillary.
Pelosi attempts to make light of laying down the law to the Obama admin, saying they agree on most issues anyway. But the power struggle is inevitable.
But it won’t always be that easy. Capitol Hill veterans predict that, no matter how much goodwill there is at the start of a new administration, there are always battles over policy and legislative priorities between the White House and Congress.
“There is tension. There is going to be tension,” said a Democratic veteran of Capitol Hill. “This is not Hastert. She wants to know what they are up to.”
Obama campaigned on progressive/socialist promises… most of which will be thwarted by economic realities. The media and many of our commenters here at FA have triumphantly stated that Obama will “govern from the left of center”. Pelosi’s goals are anything but “left of center”.
If Obama attempts to walk the moderate left path, there is a serious dust up brewing in the not so distant future between the President-elect, and the very ambitious progressive/socialist Speaker. Pelosi seeks to take advantage of the almost complete hold on power in the three branches. This window of opportunity is narrow and fragile. The power to accomplish any pet legislation – plus stack the Supreme Court with an even heavier balance of judges dedicated to a “living Constitution”, basing decisions on public opinion instead of strict constructionism – spans but a few years.
Considering that Emmanuel’s rise in the party – including ambitions to one day be Speaker – is due to considerable efforts and favors by Pelosi, one will have to wonder with whom Rahm’bo’s loyalty will lie.
Does he stick with the man who tapped him for the administrative position of power?
Or does he align himself with the 3rd in line to the Oval Office, who has already vested time and energy into grooming Emmanuel for a future as a Dem star?
One thing is certain. Pelosi is apt to start calling in favors.
Rahm’bo must weigh his long term future carefully. Who’s apron strings will provide long term security? Obama’s power may only be for one term, and max two…. eight years.
Pelosi, however, is like the energizer bunny… a career powerhouse.
Vietnam era Navy wife, indy/conservative, and an official California escapee now residing as a red speck in the sea of Oregon blue.