House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) may have led the Democratic Party to victory in the House back in 2006 and 2008, but that’s ancient history. Now, post-2010, she has said that she would retake the House for the Democrats time after time and has failed epically in this feat. The Obama-ization of the Democratic Party gave the elders a false sense of security that anyone with a “D” attached to their name would be able to win nationally with the coalition Obama built; a gross assumption. Hillary Clinton found this out the hard way. You simply cannot build a whole party apparatus around one, term-limited man. Also, around this time the Democrats were getting hollowed out at the state and local level. Right now, they’re not a national party, being restricted to the coasts and their urban strongholds. There are 1,000 fewer Democrats in office than there were in 2008-09.
While she may be a die-hard liberal, if you don’t get results, you get the boot. So far, the party has been very patient with Pelosi, but an increasing number of Democrats are starting to view her as a cancer, especially the ones who are running in key races this year. Out of 20 candidates that were surveyed by McClatchy back in August, only one was committed to voting for Pelosi to keep her leadership position on the Hill, and that candidate hails from California. During that month, Paul Davis, a Kansas Democrat running in its second congressional district, which is represented by Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS), said that he would not vote for Pelosi for leader should he win next year; Jenkins announced that she would not be running for re-election in 2018.
The man who many thought could make another run for Kansas governor is officially running for Congress instead.
Democrat Paul Davis announced his entrance into the race for the 2nd District congressional seat Tuesday. If elected, he said, he does not plan to vote for Rep. Nancy Pelosi, the current House Democratic leader and former speaker of the U.S. House when Democrats last held the majority.
“This is a broken Congress right now, and I think the leaders of both political parties bear responsibility for that,” Davis said. “And I think that we need new leadership in both political parties.”
Democrats need to flip at least 24 seats next year to retake the House, which won’t be easy. They also have to defend close to a dozen Democratic districts that went heavily for Trump. Also, there’s the party’s own geographic wall they have to deal with; you can’t win national elections by holding urban areas, especially congressional ones. Moreover, studies show that if every Hillary voter who backed a Republican representative in 2016 turned out flipped for a Democrat in 2018, the party would still fall short of retaking the majority.
Now, a new survey of Democrats statewide in California shows that things are turning sour for Nancy. While she and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) are hard core liberals, they may not be liberal enough for the emerging progressive base that’s becoming ever more active and vocal within Democratic politics (via Sacramento Bee):
The statewide survey of California Democrats by UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies found only 30 percent believe House Democrats should choose Pelosi to stay on as their leader should they win back the House of Representatives in 2018. Some 44 percent prefer somebody else taking over, while the remainder have no opinion.
Democrats have long watched in disappointment as Republicans consistently use Pelosi as “one of their main battering rams” in competitive House races, said Mark DiCamillo, director of the poll.
“What California Democrats see is that Pelosi’s image in other parts of the country is not positive,” DiCamillo said, “and it becomes a drag in their quest to retake the House.”
The UC Berkeley poll found that voters between the ages of 18 and 29 and those who identify as “strongly liberal” have considerably more favorable views of first-year U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris than they do of her Democratic colleague, Dianne Feinstein, who is considering running for a fifth term next year.
Concluded DiCamillo: “That is where the future of the Democratic Party is heading.”