Nancy Pelosi may well have had the press conference that ends her time as Speaker of the House.
By accusing the CIA of deliberately misleading Congress, she’s changed the entire picture, and I have to wonder if she realizes what she has done.
To start with, we have to realize that the CIA is a government bureaucracy–you know, the sort of organization lampooned by M*A*S*H; the kind of place that has a form to order the form to request more forms; the sort of people who fill out a permission form before–and possibly a report after–having their morning coffee. It’s a near-certainty that somewhere in the vaults at Langley are papers that will conclusively prove to anyone with the intelligence of a flea that Pelosi knew all about waterboarding.
Now, the modern CIA is at least somewhat politicized, and their ideological sympathies are with the Democrats, as shown by their efforts to undermine Bush 43. This explains why they haven’t really gone out of their way to show that Pelosi is lying. However, this new accusation has put the CIA’s back against the wall, because misleading Congress is such an explosive charge. Thus, it’s highly likely that the CIA will now feel that they have no choice but to bring forward the evidence that will prove their side of the story.
Assuming that happens, you’ll probably start to see the offices of other members of Congress start to quietly release their own records supporting the CIA’s version of events. They haven’t done so before either out of party loyalty or fear of what Madame Speaker would do to those that cross her, but once the CIA memos come out, she’s pretty much doomed and you’ll see her colleagues scrambling to “show” that they weren’t on her side.
After all that, it would be a major miracle–and a political blunder of the first magnitude–for Pelosi to keep the Speaker’s gavel. Steny Hoyer, the #2 Democrat in the House, is already starting to distance himself from Pelosi and her wild accusations, which appears to be an indication that he knows Pelosi is going down.
Pelosi has always been a political bomb-thrower, and she was put in the Speaker’s position largely because that was a good place for her to throw bombs at the “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeevil” George W. Bush. What the Democrats should have realized after the 2008 elections, but apparently didn’t, is that a bomb-thrower just has to throw bombs, and eventually will throw one that will cause more damage to herself and her friends than to her opponents–see also O’Donnell, Rosie.
For giving her the Speaker’s gavel one more time, the Democrats deserve all the problems they’re getting–and will get–because of her.