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Mitch Perry Report for 11.30.16 – How many votes will Tim Ryan get today?

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

In Washington today, House Democrats are expected to reaffirm Nancy Pelosi as their leader for the 115th Congress today, where she is being opposed by Ohio Representative Tim Ryan.

However, because the vote will be held on a secret ballot, there is a though that the vote could be a lot closer than what is expected.

Pelosi is considered to be very good at what she does, which is keep her members in line when it comes to crucial votes, as well as being a formidable fundraiser.

However, as Democrats across the country try to figure out how to win more elections in the House and Senate (as well as in the states), there is considerable thought they need to look elsewhere, preferably younger.

The fact that Pelosi represents San Francisco is also apparently a drag to those who feel the party lost the presidential race because they didn’t reach out sufficiently to middle American voters. Those same critics say it doesn’t help that the other Democratic leader in the Congress, Chuck Schumer in the Senate, comes from New York.

But there’s also this: On Pelosi’s watch, the Democrats have lost more than 60 seats since 2010, hardly a winning argument. Of their current membership, a full third of them come from just three states – NY, California and Massachusetts.

Kathy Castor, a Pelosi disciple, told this reporter last week that the party definitely needs new leadership. “It’s time for a younger generation of leaders to run for local office, to get involved in local issues and state issues,” she said.

However, before you put her down as a Ryan supporter, she added that, “There is a lot of value in having a female leader,” before insisting that she hasn’t made a final decision on who should lead the caucus.

Pelosi has said that the Democrats problem is a problem getting their message out. Really?

As the NY Times reports today, the combination of gerrymandered districts, the clustering of progressives in urban areas, and increased correlation between the presidential and congressional vote “have created structural challenges for Democrats in much of the country and threaten to keep them out of power in the House until well into the next decade.”

“We’ve got to be able to win in more places,” said Mark Mellman, a longtime Democratic pollster. “Otherwise it is going to be very hard to win a majority of House seats in the districts as currently configured.”

So there’s that.

In other news..

Day II of the Florida Automated Vehicle Summit begins this morning in Tampa.

St. Petersburg City Council members Darden Rice, Karl Nurse and Amy Foster participated in one of the three rallies held in the Bay area regarding the fight for $15 an hour wage by workers that took place yesterday, one of more than 300 such events held across the nation.

Miami Beach Gardens House Democrat Barbara Watson is proposing a statewide citizens review commission regarding lethal actions done by police officers.

And Hillsborough County-based state Senators received their committee responsibilities yesterday from President Joe Negron.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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