With the Democratic Party now seemingly in full control of our government, if only by a thin margin, everyone is naturally looking toward the future and what it will bring. One thing, in particular, being looked at is who the up-and-coming players will be.
While the party currently has a set up established leaders, it seems that nearly all of them are well past the age of retirement, bringing into question how much longer they will last and, of course, when that time comes, who will take their place.
For President-Elect Joe Biden, the answer is evident as he has chosen a much younger, not to mention more liberal, second. Should Biden ever need to step down because of his age, dementia, or simply because no one would vote for him a second time, it’s clear that the party won’t hesitate to stand behind Kamala Harris, at least until, another more viable option is given.
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But for the House of Representatives, the answer to who leads next is much less noticeable.
In fact, to most of the world, it might even look as though no one in leadership in the lower house has even contemplated the party’s leadership once the current regime is forced out for the same reasons mentioned above that Biden would be.
60 Minutes’ Lesly Stahl is one to have noticed this conundrum. And so, when given the opportunity to interview Democrat leader and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last week, she made sure to ask about it.
Stahl asked, “You’re 80. Your number two, Steny Hoyer, is 81. Your number three, Jim Clyburn, is 80. Why haven’t you brought young people into the leadership?”
Well, according to Pelosi, “We have.” She continued, saying, “You perhaps don’t know.”
However, she failed to go into any more detail. No talk of how that’s being done, no thoughts on what positions they should hold, and certainly no mention of names.
So Stahl pressed the Speaker a bit more.
“Why does AOC complain that you have not been grooming younger people for leadership?”
Now, here’s where things get particularly interesting.
Instead of replying similarly to how she did just a moment before, or even saying something about how it’s not AOC’s business to know that process at this point, she replies with this:
“I don’t know. You’ll have to ask her. Because we are.”
Now, to get the full picture here, you have to watch how Pelosi says this. Let’s just say it’s not exactly very calm or unemotional. In fact, once you’ve seen the clip for yourself, I’m sure you could say it borders on being quite snippy, if not all out rude.
And apparently, Stahl agrees because her response is, “That was kind of sharp, kind of dismissing her.”
Of course, Pelosi has to save face her a bit, so she denies it.
“I’m not dismissing her. I respect her. I think she’s very effective, as are other, as are many other, members of our caucus that the press doesn’t pay attention to. But they are there. And they are building support for what comes next.”
Well, that pretty much says it all, doesn’t it?
Suppose she can be believed about bringing in a younger generation to lead. In that case, Pelosi is basically saying that if AOC doesn’t know about their future plans for the party, it’s because AOC isn’t being considered a significant part of it.
It’s not that a younger crowd isn’t being brought in. AOC just clearly isn’t the type of person, and likely are none of her fellow “squad” members, that the current leadership wants to bring on board.
Not that we can blame them. As Pelosi mentions, AOC gets a lot of attention from the press – and not all of it good. And that’s not what the party needs, especially right now.
As one social media user responded on Twitter, AOC might be a “rising star,” but “she’s 1 out of 222.” There are plenty of other Reps who nearly just as young and capable but are also far less controversial and divisive.
Besides, AOC has pretty much admitted she thinks it’s past time those like Pelosi and her Senate counterpart, Chuck Schumer, leave Congress, making way for younger blood like her own. And I have to imagine that kind of talk doesn’t exactly go over well with most current leaders, even if they know it’s true.
No wonder Pelosi snapped…