With the House of Representatives now officially on Summer holiday until September (the Senate is in session for one more week), the focus of the Congressional elections will begin to be illuminated even larger by our national political press, obsessed with elections as opposed to public policy debates.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is well aware that the big debate is not how many seats she'll lose in the majority in Congress this November, but will it stop at 39, the magic number that separates whether Pelosi retains her Speakership, or will Americans have to get used to Speaker (John) Boehner for at least the next two years?
Pelosi gets horrible national press because of her own poor communication skills but immense respect inside of Washington for her ability to line up the votes on crucial issues. Madame Speaker insisted to ABC's new This Week host, former CNN superstar reporter Christiane Amanpour, that she is not nervous at all going into November, while still showing hyper-sensitivity to remarks White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs made a few Sundays back:
PELOSI: Well, let me say this. I never take anything for granted. And our agenda now is we're not going forward — we're not going back to the failed policies of the Bush administration. We're going forward.
AMANPOUR: So what does it make you feel, then, when the president's own spokesman said that you might lose the majority?
PELOSI: Well, I — you know, I —
AMANPOUR: well how do you feel about it
PELOSI: — with all due respect — I don't spend a whole lot of time thinking about what the president's employees say about one thing or another.
AMANPOUR: But it directly impacts —
PELOSI: Well, the — they must realize that.
But you know what, I'm speaker of the House. I have a great chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Chris Van Hollen. We have a solid plan of messaging and mobilize — mobilizing at the grassroots level and management of our campaigns. And we have a two to one advantage money-wise
So we feel very confident about where we are, whether that's well known to that gentleman or not.