Revisiting the Democrats’ Record

November 2nd, 2010

Here’s Rachel Maddow on the accomplishments of the Democrats in the past two years.

It may be cold comfort at this point, but Americans will be seeing the benefits of the legislation of the past two years for a long time.

Maddow points out how Nancy Pelosi and Congressional Democrats decided to use the political capital that they built up over the two election cycles. Equal pay for women,  a children’s health care expansion, ending subsidies to corporate banks for college loans, a major national service program expansion, the largest investments in energy and education in the country’s history, health care for 30 million more Americans, regulation (however tepid) of the banks to mitigate the possibility of another financial crisis, significant increases in assistance for veterans… I’m sure I missed something.

There will be significant debate about this for years. Would it have been better to go for incremental change and try to hold on to power for another election cycle? Maybe. Was it not the effort and the goals, but the specific deals that were cut that decreased the popularity of the legislation?  Yes, I think so.

But one thing is certain: you can criticise Nancy Pelosi for a lot of things, but it’s hard to say that she’s been ineffective as a Speaker of the House when it comes to getting things done. In two years, the conservatives’ unholy triumvirate of Obama, Pelosi and Reid accomplished more than most teams accomplish in two presidential terms.

Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that they got all of this done despite the fact that the Republican party as a whole decided that they would rather see the three of them fail than to resolve the issues that have been plaguing us as a country for years.

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