According to 'veteran senior congressional aide,' 10 House Dems secretly meeting with GOP leaders to deny speakership to Pelosi

Mark Tapscott has a source on Capitol Hill who is telling him that a bipartisan coup to throw Nancy Pelosi out of the speaker's grand office — the nicest in the Capitol — is being plotted in secret.  Writing in The Epoch Times, he informs us:

Meetings are being held among House Republicans and 10 Democrats who voted against Pelosi becoming speaker in 2019.

"A serious effort is underway to prevent Pelosi from becoming speaker, backed by the GOP and Democrats who are disturbed by their party's embrace of extreme rhetoric and policies like 'defund the police,'" The Epoch Times was told on Dec. 30 by a veteran senior congressional aide who advises multiple members of Congress.

"The odds of success are less than 50-50, but it's one of the more intriguing leadership challenges to emerge in recent decades," said the aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Intriguingly, there are no denials:

Spokesmen for Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) didn't respond to The Epoch Times' request for comment.

Pelosi has claimed that she has the job wrapped up for the 117th Congress.  The AP cheerleads:

There's little doubt that Nancy Pelosi will be reelected House speaker when the new Congress convenes Sunday. It could take a high-wire act for her to get there, largely thanks to the pandemic.

The only woman in history to serve as speaker, the California Democrat has a reputation as a formidable vote-counter and wily deal-cutter. Those skills have helped her fend off threats and cement her as leader of her party in the House since 2003, and seem likely to carry the day on Jan. 3, when the Constitution requires the new Congress to begin.

"Yeah, I do," Pelosi told a reporter this week when asked if she had the votes wrapped up.

In what seemed an indication of confidence, Pelosi told reporters Wednesday that Rep.-elect Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, will be sworn in, even as Democratic opponent Rita Hart's challenge to the election results remains under review by the House. Miller-Meeks is certain to vote against Pelosi to be speaker.

Tapscott names the Dems in the discussions, lending credibility to his report (unless they object):

The 10 Democrats include Reps. Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, Elissa Slotkin of Michigan, Mikie Sherrill of New Jersey, Kurt Schrader of Oregon, Kathleen Rice of New York, Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania, Ron Kind of Wisconsin, Jared Golden of Maine, Jason Crow of Colorado, and Jim Cooper of Tennessee.

I am of two minds on dethroning Pelosi.  On the one hand, I want strife and rebellion among Democrats and would love a speaker with little clout to force majority votes for terrible new laws.  But on the other hand, Pelosi increasingly resembles a clown, mumbling behind her mask as her arms flail and she stumbles over what words to use next.  I'd miss her as an object of scorn.  But I'd rather have a weak speaker and a divided Democrat party.

But Pelosi is as hard-nosed a politician as can be found, ruthless in getting her way and bullying individual members.  She's also been an expert money-raiser and dispenser, using money politics to get her way.

My guess is that she will eke out a victory, but I also think 2021 will be a year of many surprises, so I don't rule out one on January 3.

Caricature by Donkey Hotey, cropped.  CC BY 2.0 license

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