Last time, Nancy Pelosi persuaded House Democrats to jump off a cliff

By a narrow margin, the Democratic majority in the U.S. House of Representatives voted for complicated and controversial legislation.

Inside-the-Beltway observers, always tuned in to political technique, were duly impressed with the muscle used to get the bill through Parliament. With the words from Political, “Despite the difficult road to review, the legislation is a significant victory for Parliament Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”

For his part, the new Democratic president – less than a year in office – was delighted. He said in the legislation, “It is a courageous and necessary step.”

So yes, the Democrats were very happy then American Clean Energy and Security Act adopted by Parliament on 26 June 2009.

Oh, sorry – did you think this was about the Build Back Better (BBB) ​​legislation passed by Parliament on 19 November 2021?

We’re coming to the BBB, but for a moment, let’s continue to go down the memory lane, back to when Speaker Pelosi pressed for an ambitious – many said: also ambitious bill to create one “cap and trade” carbon dioxide emissions system. You know, to fight climate change – and maybe even to enrich her comrades. In fact, critics revet the cap-and-trade system as “Enron in the sky”, referring to the crooked company that sought to get insider profit out of its political connections.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks as Representative to House Democratic Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) (R), and House Democratic Whip Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) (L) listens during a press conference following a vote on the Clean Energy and Security Act on June 26, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

Yes, the House Democrats were happy a dozen years ago – but not for long. You see, the House proposal never passed the Democratic-controlled Senate, which meant that the Democrats who voted for it in the House were left exposed – they had voted for the exotic and expensive legislation, and yet had nothing to show for it. Only downside, no upside: pols hate it.

The following year, the setback against Pelosi / Barack Obama-like aggression actually cost the Democrats dearly. In it The 2010 midterm elections, the opposition Republicans took up 63 Hussæder – the biggest Republican advance in the lower house since 1938 – and along the way, Pelosi was released from her rostrum.

So now to 2021, when Democrats are once again in the majority, again led by Parliament Speaker Pelosi, and have once again passed a major bill, the BBB. Needless to say, the Beltway media is once again lionizing Pelosi; with the words from Punchbowl news, a separation from Political, “Pelosi wins.” The publication added, admiring, “Pelosi pulled an inside straight… [she] played the long game, awaited all the grievances from the various factions inside her caucus and got what she wanted at the end of the day. (As we can see, Pelosi is much admired by internal baseball types, those who focus more on legislative influence—whip operations and the like – than on actual political results.)

Meanwhile, the new president, Joe Biden (not exactly a new face, but still a new president), is also very pleased. As he tweeted:

Today, the House passed my Build Back Better Act. I thank President Pelosi, the management of the House and the members who worked so hard and voted to pass this bill. Now it goes to the US Senate, where I look forward to it being passed as soon as possible so I can sign it into law.

Yes, a big bill from 2021 is very similar to a big bill from 2009. As they say, The more things change, the more they remain the same.

So now the BBB is going to the Senate, which is also Democrat-controlled, albeit by the narrowest margin: 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans, with the Vice President as tie-breaker.

Republicans, for their part, are unanimous against the BBB, and therefore turn their eyes to the two Democratic senators who have been such obstacles to democratic unity, at least so far: Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona. No one can say what they will do, even though we know so much: the BBB faces weeks, if not months, of quarrels in the Senate. And it could end up as a dead letter, just like cap-and-trade did 12 years ago.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks at a news conference with Democratic leaders following the adoption of the Build Back Better Act on November 19, 2021 in Washington, DC. (JIM WATSON / AFP via Getty Images)

In fact, much of the news about BBB is ominous. Most obviously, the optics of the bill – including, as it does, a huge tax cut for rich people in blue states – have been badly messed up and tarnished. In addition, Democrats say the BBB will “only” cost $ 1.75 trillion over ten years, and yet the non-partisan committee for a responsible federal budget say that the real cost will be more than a third more. Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) on his side say at “Building Back Bonkers“, as he calls it, will cost more than double its alleged sticker price – $ 4.6 trillion.

So this is the cost-cutting law that Manchin and Sinema want to vote for? And for that matter other Democratic senators? Are there any of them who really want to be responsible for the accompanying inflation – not to mention future headlines about boondoggles and waste?

Next year’s midway is hovering in view. And for Democrats, the early indicators are ominous. For example, Biden’s approval rating falling– Presidential approval is a key factor in mid-term voting – and the GOP side of the generic vote is increasing.

So yes, just as 2021 has a lot in common with 2009, so 2022 could have a lot in common with 2010.

Nancy Pelosi may be a big arm-twister, but possibly for the second time now, she has whipped her fellow Democrats out of an electoral roll.

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