Nancy Pelosi Fixated on Job Creation


By JOHN BRESNAHAN | 2/11/11 4:37 AM EST
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi may be able to get through a sentence without using the word “jobs,” but you wouldn’t know that by listening to her lately.

The year of the rabbit? That’s apparently about jobs. Black History Month? That’s also a jobs issue. Public financing for presidential campaigns — Pelosi managed to turn that into a statement about jobs.

Three months after Democrats lost the majority in the House because of, well, the jobs issue, Pelosi has indeed finally found her message. In virtually every press conference, press release and media interview, she talks about jobs. On Wednesday, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee also adopted the message, launching, a website intended to mock House Republicans for focusing so heavily on health care and spending cuts. On Thursday, during a union-backed event calling for more government-funded infrastructure spending, Pelosi stood behind a podium with a sign that read “Jobs Now.” She used the word nine times in just over two minutes.   

“Strengthening the middle class” and “reducing the deficit” are other phrases that form the core of Pelosi’s mantra now, and they are repeated often throughout the shrunken House Democratic Caucus. Pelosi hasn’t rolled out a new Democratic jobs bill this year, but one is expected soon, according to Democratic sources.

House Democrats also held a hearing on Feb. 2 titled “Creating Jobs Now in America.”

But her rhetoric has been remarkably consistent, regardless of the issue.

On the Senate’s rejection of GOP efforts to repeal the health care reform law, Pelosi said, “Democrats are focused on Americans’ top priority: creating jobs.”

On Feb. 4, in response to a White House report on efforts to bolster U.S. innovation, Pelosi said in a statement, “Today, in this new report, the White House has outlined a strategy to create jobs and promote growth, while keeping America No. 1.”

In a Feb. 3 statement on the House GOP budget proposals, Pelosi said, “Democrats will measure every effort by whether it creates jobs, strengthens the middle class and reduces the deficit, but the Republican proposal will come at the expense of economic growth and American jobs.”

During a Feb. 2 session by Democrats on bolstering U.S. manufacturing, part of the “Make It in America” program pushed by Pelosi and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, she said, “It’s about making it in America by creating jobs. … There should be no higher priority for this Congress than creating jobs now.”

Pelosi has even mentioned jobs while addressing issues that have nothing to do with jobs or the economy. For instance, in a statement last week on the Chinese New Year, Pelosi slipped the word in while celebrating the year of the rabbit.

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