Pelosi exploded the myth of bipartisanship | CNN
July 22, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.
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Nancy Pelosi was right to reject Kevin McCarthy's recommendations for the select committee on the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol, writes Nicole Hemmer; she says Pelosi's move exposes Washington's 80-year bipartisanship fetish as a historical fallacy.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday rejected Jim Jordan and Jim Banks, two Republican members who Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy had recommended for the select committee on the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
The select committee will still be bipartisan – GOP Rep. Liz Cheney, who voted to impeach Trump for fomenting the insurrection, will still serve on it – but the notion that Democratic leaders must work with Republican leaders in order to have political legitimacy is well and truly dead.
The two major parties had become a mishmash of ideologies: there were liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats, and on the major issues of the day, bipartisanship made life-changing legislation possible.
By the time President Barack Obama entered office, bipartisanship had become both a prize and a weapon: the Obama administration dragged its feet on landmark legislation, waiting — fruitlessly — for a handful of Republican votes so they could claim the legitimacy of bipartisanship.
If Republicans had discovered the power of withholding bipartisanship during the Obama era, Democrats slowly began to understand the limits of working with Republicans in the Trump era, a time when both the President and the party’s leadership in Congress proved unreliable dealmakers and craven partisans.
It’s that bipartisanship was never a metric for good politics, and by rejecting the Republican leaders’ conditions, Pelosi has acknowledged that, and opened the door for a franker assessment of political goods and political harms – while safeguarding the select committee from those who, with their votes against the election, supported the insurrection.