Pelosi, Progressives and the Administrative State

AEI’s Steve Hayward posts this insightful analysis of Nancy Pelosi’s advice to Republicans.

“To my Republican friends, take back your party so that it doesn’t matter so much who wins the election because we have shared [progressive] values.” In other words, it’s fine if Republicans win elections so long as they agree with us [progressives]. But she couldn’t stop there. She added this: “The fact is, elections shouldn’t matter as much as they do.”

Steve provides a link to a video of her comments.  This is part of his post, but his entire post is will worth reading.

It is a mistake to dismiss Pelosi as the complete nitwit she often appears. The most clarifying single moment of the last generation may well have been Pelosi’s famous remark that we’d need to pass the healthcare bill to find out what was in it. Rather than being a matter of ridicule, I thought Pelosi expressed perfectly the innermost character of congressional legislation in the modern administrative state. What she said was quite true and accurate: even at more than 2,000 pages, the enormous discretion and policy responsibility delegated to executive branch agencies meant that in effect the actual operating law would be formulated by administrators rather than Congress. And the huge number of waivers being granted under ObamaCare reveals the essentially arbitrary (some might say lawless) nature of administrative government.

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