If They Regain the House, Dems Have a Choice

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

If They Regain the House, Dems Have a Choice

A week or so ago, I expressed concern about how House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi — were the Dems to regain the House after the 2006 elections — would reorder the agenda. In the latest issue of The New Yorker, Jeffrey Goldberg has written an excellent article about the Democrats' challenge. In this interview with Goldberg, TNY's Amy Davidson asks a question that points to the same concern I have:
DAVIDSON: Nancy Pelosi told you, “We win ’06, we get subpoena power.” You write that she appeared to be excited by that prospect.

GOLDBERG: It’s very exciting to the Democratic Party’s most loyal supporters and to the Net-roots people, the online Democrats who are quite vitriolic in their hatred of President Bush. The problem — and this is what a lot of Democrats say who are cautioning against this — is that by the time the Democrats take over the House, if they do, it’ll be 2007, and the Bush Administration will be on its last legs. The argument is that, if the House goes Democratic, the leadership should spend more time convincing the American people that this is the party you want in the White House in 2008.

Imagine if the Democrats in the House voted to raise the minimum wage, or for college-tuition tax credits. That sort of legislation would be broadly attractive to millions of voters, and either the Republican Senate or President Bush would be put in a position of stopping it.

Or let’s say that the Democrats take over the House and vote to implement the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission. That would probably be pretty popular.

So they could work to make the country safer and to help the poor — or they could spend their time investigating the run-up to the Iraq war.

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