Pressure on Pelosi mounts after Ossoff’s 6th District defeat

A screenshot of a Congressional Leadership Fund attack ad against Democrat Jon Ossoff.

Democrats are forming a circular firing squad in the aftermath of Jon Ossoff’s Tuesday defeat, and they’re training their sights on the same person Republicans used as a battering ram the Sixth District fight. Consider the headlines.

— There was this from Daily Beast: “Wake up, Democrats. Ossoff didn’t lose the election – Pelosi did.”

— And this from NPR: Democrats play blame game with Pelosi after House election

— Breitbart entered the fray with glee: Cher Turns on Nancy Pelosi After Ossoff Loss

— The New York Times offers more, with perhaps the most damning quote of the day:

A small group of Democrats who have been critical of Ms. Pelosi in the past again pressed her to step down on Wednesday. And in a private meeting of Democratic lawmakers, Representative Tony Cárdenas of California, Ms. Pelosi’s home state, suggested the party should have a more open conversation about her effect on its political fortunes.….

 

Representative Tim Ryan of Ohio, who tried to unseat Ms. Pelosi as House minority leader late last fall, said she remained a political millstone for Democrats. But Mr. Ryan said the Democratic brand had also become “toxic” in much of the country because voters saw Democrats as “not being able to connect with the issues they care about.”

 

“Our brand is worse than Trump,” he said.

Others said the party needs a new message, but not necessarily a new leader. Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta, told Tamar Hallerman that it’s not as easy as saying “get rid of Pelosi.”

“When I came up here, we had 56 Blue Dogs. When I came up here, every state in the South had a white (Democrat) or two. Like we did. And I have seen us drift away from that,” he said.

He added that the party needs to reinvent its message for labor unions, blue-collar workers and others it once had a lock on: “We cannot be a major party without the middle of America.”

Pelosi took a toll on Ossoff, as reflected in interviews with conservative voters across the district. A quick look at our inbox attests to that. One email from a voter this morning asserts, “Georgians don’t want Californians deciding who is going to represent them.”

But for another idea why Ossoff fell flat – and gave Handel an opening to unite Republicans – consider this take Jim Galloway posted late Wednesday. A taste:

It wasn’t that Jon Ossoff wasn’t a resident of the Sixth District — a fact pointed out by Handel time and again.

 

No, it was that Ossoff was too much a part of the Sixth, and feared offending Mom and Dad’s old Republican neighbors with attacks that tied his opponent to current events in and current concerns about Washington.

Alan Abramowitz, the Emory University political scientist, was thinking along the same lines with his op-ed piece for the New York Daily News:

[T]here was a major problem with Ossoff’s strategy: Karen Handel was not Donald Trump, and the Ossoff campaign failed to effectively tie Handel to Trump. Polls in the district found that Trump was unpopular, as was the GOP’s health-care plan, which had been crafted largely by Tom Price and was strongly supported by Handel.

 

But the Ossoff campaign did not strongly go after Handel for her support of either Trump or the American Health Care Act. Instead, negative ads run by Ossoff and outside groups focused on attacking Handel as a self-dealing career politicians and on her role in cutting off funding for Planned Parenthood during her brief tenure as an executive at the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Insider’s note: This item was ripped and expanded from today’s Morning Jolt.

Reader Comments 0

206 comments
Edith Stanley
Edith Stanley

Problem is NOT Pelosi. Problem is with gerrymandering.

DawgWhistle
DawgWhistle

Democrats need to wake up and start to fight fire with fire. First, we, and the lame-stream media, should start calling a spade a spade in that Nancy Pelosi is a smart, completely effective - the most effective Speaker since last Democrat before

her - member of The House. What she is is yet another victim of Republican 'demonization strategy'. Just like they've done to Hillary, they've been beating the drums with 'big lies' to the point that they've succeeded in getting the gullible among us, including Democrats, to believe something that just ain't so.

And as for whether Obama and his Administration 'choked', what he did was decide that to go public with what, in essence, would be charging the Republican nominee with treason just before the election, would be too tough on the country - particularly since they thought Hillary would win anyway and the country could be spared the agony of the reality. Only that didn't work because Russia's interference did. Now it's gonna have to go through that agony by charging a 'sitting' President with treason and all the crap that goes with it...and I can't wait. Maybe then the fundamental evil of the Republican Party will be revealed...an evil that saw the Nixon campaign in '68 sabotage Johnson's Vietnam Peace agreement that would have ended that damn war then...and instead carried it on another five years and killed another 25,000 American soldiers...all just to win an election...the fact that Johnson didn't go through with what he knew to be the treasonous acts of Nixon was, again, because he didn't think the country could handle that reality...and it's still with us,

Leslie Williams
Leslie Williams

Don't get rid of Pelosi. Get rid of Gerry mandering! Voter suppression, citizens united and lying on the campaign trail. Lying to the public should be a criminal offense for any public servant.

Jeri Henson Dies
Jeri Henson Dies

Bernie & Co. is not the future of the Democratic Party. A DEMOCRAT must be in charge and leading the DEMOCRATIC PARTY. Bernie & Co. will lead to more Republican wins. That said, Democrats must start working on getting their voting base registered and to the polls to vote every time--minorities--millennials--educated white women--working class whites and soccer moms will never again vote in their own best interests.

Amiel Summers
Amiel Summers

No. They all vote, like everyone, according to what they perceive to be in their best interest. The 'D' in the calculus formula. Who controls the title? Yes, Bernie Sanders is the future. It's. in the natural ebb&flow of things. Not a 'liberal' just well adjusted to to the world that I live in. And not all that I think, believe, aspire to, and occasionally do, has fit neatly into the pre-defined categories 'normal' people use to identify affiliation. Guess I'm saying. Things are changing. Peace.

L Sean Nada
L Sean Nada

It's not just her stupidity but the fact the left has shown itself as the hypocritical party of hate! If people knew history they would of already knew this!

Andy Hall
Andy Hall

A little extreme wouldn't you say?

Mike E Ganges
Mike E Ganges

she should have stepped down at least two years ago.

Bonnie Cobb
Bonnie Cobb

You need to be asking for the Republican job , they are the one cheat,Mrs. Pelosi need to be left alone.

Patricia Shannon
Patricia Shannon

A lot of angst by democrats, snarkiness by republicans about recent interim election. I had hopes for some changes, but was not surprised at the results. These seats are open because the occupants are republicans who were appointed by the Trump administration. They are in strongly republican districts, whose district lines were set by republicans to be safe. The fact that some races were close is significant.

Jan Daniels
Jan Daniels

No! Keep her. What better face for the dems?

Patricia Evans
Patricia Evans

I am sick and tired of MEN, disparaging Nancy Pelosi! She's a strong, intelligent woman who has accomplished much for the country. Back off! Women are on the rise!

Tony Donell
Tony Donell

Pat -- while I probably wouldn't blame Pelosi in particular - the Democrats need new blood running the show -- they are stuck in the Clinton era - They spent a lot of money - said and did the same things - and got the same results. Think of movie "money ball "-new way of looking at baseball players - made "A's" successful. Perez is old school -- they needed new blood. They are not selling what they believe in - just hammering away at Trump will not do it.

Patricia Evans
Patricia Evans

Tony Donell THAT is exactly why 30 yr old Jon Ossoff was backed by the Party. He lost by 4 percentage points. Unheard of here in the deep red part of the county, that's been purposefully gerrymandered to favor the Repubs. Dems always lose by 20/25 percentage points. Ossoff lost by only 4 in the runoff. In the previous "jungle" primary, Ossoff got 49% of the total vote spread among 4 other Dems and 11 Repubs. He almost won it outright then. The Repubs are nervous, so they rallied behind a woman even they didn't like, Karen Handel.

Robin Lynn Evans
Robin Lynn Evans

But, Pat, that's exactly why these men don't like her. She is a threat to them because she is intelligent, articulate, and calls it as she sees it. She's no wallflower.

Bryan de Klerk
Bryan de Klerk

Somehow, for Liberals, it's all about her vagina. It can't possibly have anything to do with her character, her Socialist ideals and the fact that she is not mentally competent.

Patricia Evans
Patricia Evans

So, where is your PSYCHIATRIC degree from, to make a diagnosis at a distance about someone you've never met?

Bryan Odale
Bryan Odale

The no name who went against tom price last election and had no big money support got more votes than j. Us off

Jose Arturo Mayaudon
Jose Arturo Mayaudon

Funny thing, I actually thought he should of embrace being as progressive as a Californian. What's interesting, no one in major media is pointing out the obvious... these were special elections in very red district, which means the GOP were on the defense to try and keep those districts.

Norm Cooper
Norm Cooper

Keep her. It is good when the bad guys have idiots as leaders. Let her stay.

Robert Bass
Robert Bass

Try free thinking for a change, and not what others tell you when and what to think...

Therese McNally
Therese McNally

Blame game. Mr Ossof's campaign missed the mark plain and simple. He did not capitalize on what really matters to most voters...healthcare and job security.

Barry Wilson
Barry Wilson

That's exactly what he campaigned on. That and fiscal responsibility. Guess you missed it.

Brett Fiedler
Brett Fiedler

Dimocrat Pelosi has long ago had her cheese slide off her cracker, and with as many problems that the party is having, they can't continue with the embarrassed! Nastys' ranting about how Trumps world travels were not in national alphabetical order proved to me both that her brain is just making her mouth babble...she literally doesn't know what she's saying. And it proves as well just how much politics count in Washington DC. The old gal should have hung it up a while back but she's too greedy to back off.

John Johnson
John Johnson

She's the best vote getter for Republicans

Pete Higby
Pete Higby

It's time that the Democratic party wake up and start turning their attention toward the middle class and the people that care get rid of Pelosi!! Wake up America this party is doomed if we continue down the same path!! All you people are whining and complaining about Donald Trump !! Look in your own backyard get rid of the old guard ! The Democratic party will never never win unless we look at ourselves! Look at Hillary Clinton . Ran the worst campaign in history to the worst candidate in the American history ! Wake up !! Go back to the party that it was when FDR and Kennedy ran it !!! Get rid of Pelosi and everybody and start over stop whining and stop spinning your wheels

Chris Knowles
Chris Knowles

Love this. You freaking cowards at myAJC are too scared to put your name on a Pelosi hit piece ... BS cowards. Go back to the coop with the other chickens AND quit stinking up our politics.

Kannathaporn (Kandie) Beck
Kannathaporn (Kandie) Beck

It's a game may dirty trick. R knew that people don't like Pelosi so they just made something up about her related to Ossoff. Pelosi may know nothing about GA.

Gwen Buice
Gwen Buice

Anytime you see a Georgia Politics feed expect it to be totally republican. It is what it is.

Amos Manley Jr
Amos Manley Jr

Don't think it has anything to do with nancy......its about the msg!!!!!