It seems House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) just can’t wait until Democrats retake the House in November so that she can use the House Majority Leader’s power to subpoena to investigate and “negotiate” with the Trump Administration.
Pelosi told CNN’s “Citizen” forum in New York City Monday that she’s itching to get her hands back on the gavel so that she can use the subpoena power, which she called “a great arrow to have in your quiver in terms of negotiating on other subjects.”
“To use it, or not to use it,” she added.
By saying she’s willing to use subpoena power as a negotiating chip for other issues, Nancy Pelosi is admitting what we’ve known all along – that the countless investigations Democrats are threatening to launch are baseless and totally political. pic.twitter.com/pIogNaNmFz
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) October 22, 2018
Pelosi isn’t revealing any new information; the Democrats have used the ability to launch “independent” investigations into Trump administration policies and activities as a campaign tool, frequently referencing the things they plan on doing if they suddenly regain control of one House of Congress, as expected.
But Pelosi is hinting at something slightly more nefarious than Democrats like Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), who yesterday suggested that House Democrats would re-open an investigation into whether Russia meddled in the 2016 Presidential election: she wants to use her ability to call investigations as a way of bargaining with the Trump administration.
If Trump cooperates with the Democratic House, she’ll user her powers for good, keeping investigations to a minimum and refusing to subpoena “key” witnesses who might provide the Dems with damaging information about the Trump White House.
If Trump doesn’t cooperate, Nancy has the power to call investigation after investigation, and witness after witness, and no one can refuse the power of the Congressional subpoena — except, perhaps, the president.
Pelosi later added that she’s planning on investigating other Federal agencies whose policies have changed under the Trump administration in ways Pelosi doesn’t like.
In fairness to Pelosi, once the gavel is in her hands, investigations are her prerogative. Each majority can call members of the Executive Branch to testify in Congressional hearings, and Republicans used the power often during the Obama administration. But Nancy has a few key hurdles to clear before she’s in possession of the Speaker’s office once again.
First, the Democrats have to take back the House. They’re predicted to clear this hurdle, but not by much, and as they discovered in 2016, there’s no such thing as a guaranteed election. Dems will have to snag around 30 seats in the House to give themselves a clear majority, and not all seats up for grabs are in solidly Democratic territory. They’ll need to flip seats, pick up open seats, and win handily in states President Trump took in 2016.
Then, Nancy Pelosi has to be her party’s clear choice for Speaker of the House. Although she was Speaker years ago, when Democrats controlled the House in President Barack Obama’s first term, there’s no reason Democrats have to hand her back the chair, particularly given that the party has changed significantly since Nancy last held the title. Both the national party and the Left, as a whole, has moved further leftward — much further to the left than Nancy Pelosi.
They may want a change.
Until then, it seems, Nancy can dream.