The Corner

The Pelosi Disappointment

I feel a bit sorry for liberals when it comes to Nancy Pelosi. I think among leading Democrats of the last decade or so, she inspires the least respect from her ideological enemies, and deservedly so. She seems to represent everything caricaturesque about liberal women in politics and highlights all of the traits the Democrats have been trying to downplay. She’s very liberal, very emotional, culturally very distant. She comes across like one of the angrier board members of Planned Parenthood. I’m no fan of Hillary, but Hillary looks nigh-upon Churchillian compared to Pelosi.

When you think of the Congressional leaders Republicans have had over the last 10 or so years, you can really see how poorly Pelosi compares. Gingrich, Armey and Delay may have had their flaws and I have no doubt that from the liberal Democrat’s perspective they seemed to confirm many of the stereotypes liberals hold about Republicans. But even if you thought they were evil geniuses, it’s hard to dispute that they were geniuses. Okay, I don’t think Delay is as smart as Armey or Gingrich, but he is very, very effective. What exactly does Pelosi bring to the table that helps Democrats? Passion? Oh right, that’s really in short supply.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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