With expectations of success in the Nov. 7 congressional elections building among Democrats, let’s consider the size and composition of a House Democratic majority -- and what kind of leverage that majority would have. If Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi gets at least 218 seats to win a majority, a small but decisive number of her members would be centrist and conservative Democrats such as Rep. Melissa Bean of Illinois, Rep. John Salazar of Colorado, and Rep. Jim Marshall of Georgia.Last week Bean, Salazar, and Marshall — all locked in tough races -- reminded Pelosi with their votes for the Republican-sponsored tax cut that they side with President Bush and the Republicans on some big issues.
On each of these votes, Pelosi, Emanuel and most House Democrats voted in opposition to maverick conservative-centrist Democrats. Despite their ideological differences with the conservative-centrists, Pelosi and Emanuel have thrown their fundraising weight behind them.
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