It’s really amazing what the outcome of an election can do to party unity. Two weeks ago the news reports claimed that the Republican party was about to go to war and break into two, while the Democratic Party was virtual love fest. Then the election happened, the Republicans won the White House, kept control of the senate and the house and everything changed.
Today the GOP is united behind the president-elect and the Democratic Party is being torn apart. The old guard vs. the new, the progressive wing vs. the extremely very progressive wing. And as a result minority leader Pelosi may be demoted to just plain old Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
Earlier this week the Dems unexpectedly delayed a scheduled leadership vote until after Thanksgiving. The renegade section of the party fought for the delay because they needed time to generate a challenge to Pelosi’s leadership.
Today Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan announced he would challenge Rep. Nancy Pelosi as House minority leader, Ryan wants to expand the party’s strength to the middle of the country instead of just the east and west coasts of the U.S. the face and seek a focus on the economic concerns of rust belt and rural voters—the people who were ignored by the Democratic Party and the Media in recent elections
The battle over the future of the House Democrats has also become a battle over demographics. Pelosi is a liberal who has led Democrats in the House since 2003 from a West Coast district, state and region that votes overwhelmingly Democratic. Ryan, 43, was elected in 2003 and only knows Pelosi as his caucus’ leader. He hails from a battleground state that Trump won easily with the support of frustrated white working class voters.
“A lot of our caucus is bicoastal,” Ryan told reporters this week. “States like Ohio don’t have the kind of representation … that we need to take the majority back.”
The members most open to having a “discussion” about the direction of leadership is propelled by states where Democrats have lost voters at the state and Congressional level but also lost at the presidential level in 2016.
Ryan seems to appeal to the Democrats concerned with Trump’s victory and the Democrat’s collapse in the Midwest last week. Right now the leadership of the house is entirely composed of Reps who represent coastal states.
There may be other Democrats who join the charge to defeat Pelosi including members of her own leadership group there were some pushing New York Rep. Joe Crowley, who was the vice chair of the House Democratic Caucus to run, but he announced that he’s not going to oppose Pelosi. There were also rumors that Rep Xavier Becerra, another member of leadership, is making calls to assess support for running against Pelosi.
While Pelosi claims to have support of 2/3 of house democrats, Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), who pushed through the delay in the leadership elections is throwing down the BS card on Pelosi’s claim. Speaking with reporters on Wednesday, Moutlon said:
“’I haven’t seen her list [of supporters],’ Moulton said, ‘but she said that the overwhelming view of the caucus was to hold elections on Thursday and obviously that was not the overwhelming view.’ Moulton said he’s not sure how many members are willing to buck Pelosi’s bid for a new term as Democratic leader, but he said “an awful lot of people are coming to me and saying, ‘I want other options.’”
“We did worse than the lowest estimates for how many seats we would take back,” Moulton said. “The American people sent a very clear message that the status quo is unacceptable.”