But I am at a complete loss in understanding one portion of CM Evans's letter to Blackburn et al.:
I saw Nancy's speech before the vote. Even someone from San Francisco ought to know that when bringing bi-partisan legislation to a vote, you really need to at least feign bi-partisanship. That usually means calling on your colleagues to serve the interests of the country above their own political interests. She didn't do that and I guess that made you mad. Honestly, I can't say I blame you.I'm with Josh Marshall on blaming Pelosi for the vote results: I've listened to the speech, and I don't see it as divisive or markedly partisan as the Republican leadership (and now Emily Evans) has argued. Watch the whole thing for yourself, and see if you can help me understand what I am missing here:
People keep criticizing it as partisan, but none of Pelosi's critics bother to quote specific sections that are aimed at dividing the parties on the issues. I don't get it.
With 60% of Dems and 33% of Republicans voting for the bill, blaming Pelosi looks like scapegoating to me. It's a lame claim. It doesn't fly, and it looks a little like pandering to bruised egos in the council member's letter.
UPDATE: On another note, while CM Evans sees 2008 paralleling 1929, others see a truer parallel with 1932:
To me, the recent House defeat of the financial bailout bill echoes the defeat of the national sale tax in 1932. The Depression dried up federal revenues, so the Hoover administration proposed a national sales tax to raise money. Business and the leadership of both parties favored the bill, but the public was overwhelmingly opposed. Liberal Republican Fiorella LaGuardia led a bipartisan revolt against the bill. House Speaker John N. Garner actually left the speaker’s chair to go into the well and plead with his fellow Democrats to pass the bill. Garner normally had tight control on his party, but not this time. The bill was defeated 153-223.
In both cases, an unpopular Republican administration put forward a proposal to deal with an economic crisis, supported by the Democratic leadership in the House and the vast majority of the business community. Nonetheless, a bipartisan populist revolt sent it down to defeat.
UPDATE: CM Evans asked me to post her revised paragraph about Pelosi:
I saw Nancy's speech before the vote. Even someone from San Francisco ought to know that when bringing bi-partisan legislation to a vote, you really need to at least feign bi-partisanship. That usually means calling on your colleagues to serve the interests of the country above their own political interests. She didn't do that and I guess that made you mad. Honestly, I can't say I blame you. But, returning her partisan behavior with some of your own really isn't helping us here.The revision doesn't change the impression here that she is reading partisanship into Pelosi's speech. The speech was not horribly partisan from where I sit, and Pelosi seemed to be making appeals for safeguards to protect taxpayers. Since when is that partisan? The Republicans' egotistical sense of woundedness is infinitely too petty to be placed on the same balance with Pelosi's speech. It's still largely scapegoating, in my opinion.
UPDATE: Now Knoxnews.com's Katie Allison Granju is uncritically echoing the same Republican lines about the speech being "partisan" without demonstrating with regard to the content how it is partisan ("Because they said so"?). Like every other anti-Pelosi judgment I've read, it amounts to analyzing without analysis. We're just supposed to assume that because people are calling something partisan, then it is partisan.
That's why I posted the video of all 16+ minutes of the speech here. I seriously don't see how it is partisan in any way that would undermine this particular vote, and I want someone to explain to me with quotes how it is such an affront to bipartisanship. And I also want someone to explain how bringing kumbaya to the Republican and Democratic parties on any issue is more important than protecting taxpayers and consumers. To hell with the parties. They're a primary reason why we are in this mess to begin with.