Much has been made of distinct factions of the Republican Party beginning to emerge after (or as many would argue, prior to,) the 2020 presidential election, particularly with many high profile Republicans blaming former President Donald Trump for the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol building.
There is the Mitch McConnell-Mitt Romney-Liz Cheney wing. They are the crowd that blames Trump for the riot. They are the ones who didn’t think Donald Trump is “presidential” enough.
Then there are the new GOP young guns, the Marjorie Taylor Greenes and the Lauren Boeberts, the ones getting attention from conservatives for all the right reasons.
The Democrats and the mainstream media will continue go on about the GOP not being able to work and play well with others.
That is because the shiny object over there they don’t want anyone to see is the emerging split within the Democrat Party.
— The Hill (@thehill) April 12, 2021
Fewer Numbers In The House
After the Democrats took charge of the House, Senate, and the White House, Democrats of all stripes were jubilant at the thought of their big spending, big government agenda finally getting pushed through.
But perhaps the most jubilant were the far-left progressives. Think here of the ‘Squad’ types like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar – and older progressives like socialist Bernie Sanders.
While they still have roughly the same numbers in the Congressional Progressive Caucus as they did prior to the election, some of the more moderate members have been replaced by hardcore progressives – like newly-elected Cori Bush replacing Lacy Clay. In other words, the Progressive Caucus has gotten even more progressive.
Fast forward to April of 2021. Reps. Marcia Fudge (D-OH), Cedric Richmond (D-LA), and New Mexico Rep. Deb Haaland have all ascended to positions in the Biden administration. The recent death of Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL) does not help matters.
Even though special elections will not be held for awhile, that does not bode well for Nancy Pelosi’s rickety 5-seat majority.
The Hill reports that this means Nancy Pelosi can ill-afford dissenters and troublemakers in the party in order to get anything passed without Republican support.
Anyone else nervous that Biden is taking Democrats from the House for his cabinet? The Democratic majority is razor thin. If a handful need to go into quarantine due to COVID, Republicans temporarily hold the majority. This is a risky move.
— Ted (@trom771) December 18, 2020
Unfortunately For Democrats, There Are Those That Are Going Rogue
But much to the chagrin of the Democrats, they do have those who are not toeing the Party line within the ranks.
In the Senate, the Democrats have the opposite problem of the House – moderates like Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) have already said they are not on board with Democrats attempt to get rid of the filibuster.
Manchin has also expressed the opinion that the proposed corporate tax hike from 21% to 28% contained in the infrastructure bill is too high for his liking.
There are more problems in the House. Nancy Pelosi brought a $1.5 trillion infrastructure package to the floor of the House last fall, there were defectors.
Reps. Collin Peterson (D-MN) and Ben McAdams (D-UT) both voted “no.” Three New York House Democrats have pledged to vote “no” on Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan unless they get their way on the repeal of state and local tax gap measures in New York.
And those are not even the progressives.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has stated that she does not believe the $2 trillion infrastructure bill goes far enough.
When Progressives issue their “wish list”, and it is quite obvious they want to “go big,” believe them.
This is not nearly enough. The important context here is that it’s $2.25T spread out over 10 years.
For context, the COVID package was $1.9T for this year *alone,* with some provisions lasting 2 years.
Needs to be way bigger. https://t.co/eTQ7cxuTzF
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) March 30, 2021
Will Cooler Heads Prevail?
Conventional wisdom says that the party out of power gains the most seats in the mid-terms. Some not-so-conventional wisdom may be telling Democrats to keep all their ducks in a row and keep everyone on the same page to get as much of their legislation pushed through as possible before 2022.
That could be easier said than done.
And what of those looming special elections? Even if they all go Democrat, what kind of Democrat will fill those seats?
Will the ‘Squad’ be taking on still more members? It doesn’t appear they listen too much to Nancy Pelosi now.
She may be forced to whip a little Democrat-machine tough love on her members.
Those who have been around a while should know life is tough enough without that.
Democrats would do well to not revel in Republican Party inter-squabbles, and head off their own.
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Author: Becky Noble
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