Whatever happened to Nancy Pelosi, asks Dana Milbank at The Washington Post. Little more than a year ago, she was marching across the Capitol, oversize gavel in hand, to vote on the health care bill that she helped bring to the House floor. This month, the president and House Speaker John Boehner completely "cut her out of talks aimed at averting a government shutdown." Her vote against the budget compromise on Thursday was a "stark indication of just how far Obama has moved from the former House speaker." It's to his discredit, says Milbank. The president seems to have forgotten how to negotiate since he dumped Pelosi from his circle, and he's "rudderless" as a result. Here's an excerpt:
The former House speaker ... largely defined [Obama's] first two years in office. Then, she was his rudder, and she kept his presidency on a reliably liberal course. Virtually every important piece of legislation — the stimulus, the health care bill, financial regulations — was negotiated at the conference table in her second-floor office in the Capitol. ...
Obama, without Pelosi charting his leftward course, has drifted to where he appears to feel most comfortable: in the middle, splitting differences... But at what cost? Pelosi loyalists say that, ideology aside, Obama simply isn’t getting as much from negotiations as he should, because his bottom line is fuzzy.
Read the entire piece at The Washington Post.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How our botched understanding of 'science' ruins everything
- How U2 became the new Nickelback
- The science of sex: 4 harsh truths about dating and mating
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- The secret to handling pressure like astronauts, Navy SEALs, and samurai
- Russia is stealthily threatening America with nuclear war
- 13 Urban Outfitters controversies
- Save the world... by changing how you pee
Subscribe to the Week