Nancy Pelosi has a lot of strikes against her going into today’s Democratic leadership elections: She’s led the party in the House for 14 years. She’s in her 70s. Democrats underperformed in this month’s elections. She’s from San Francisco, the bête noire of middle America. But if her challenger, Tim Ryan, has a chance, it may be because the issue will be decided by secret ballot, shielding Pelosi defectors from the political costs of bucking her.
“People like that pose little harm to our country. But tinkering with our First Amendment might.”
—Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, on flag burners, in a 2006 op-ed
“That’s up to him. He’s over 21 years old.”
—Sen. Lindsey Graham, asked if Donald Trump should have a Twitter account, per Tim Mak of The Daily Beast
ON DECK FOR NOV. 30
8:50 a.m. House Democrats meet for leadership elections.
9:30 a.m. Embassy of Sweden hosts Nobel Laureate symposium.
10 a.m. Bipartisan Policy Center holds discussion with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson.
10 a.m. House Foreign Affairs hearing on the status of Libya.
2:30 p.m. White House roundtable with Attorney General Loretta Lynch on criminal-justice reform
Xenophobia. Not the concept, but the word, which was named by Dictionary.com as the word of the year for 2016.
Chris Christie, who may have seen his last best chance at a Cabinet post go up in flames with the selection of Elaine Chao as secretary of Transportation.
45: The birthday that the Kingdom of Bahrain marks next week. Its local embassy will be celebrating at—you guessed it—the Trump International Hotel.
QUICK TAKES ON THE NEWS: GOP trolls Pelosi
After years of infighting and leadership turmoil, House Republicans are having some fun now that Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi has a challenge of her own. “I’m rootin’ for Nancy,” said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday. “She may have more support in the GOP conference than her own.” The National Republican Congressional Committee got in on the act as well, offering a backhanded “endorsement” of the House Minority Leader whose tenure “led to the largest Republican majority since the 1920s.” Staffers even hung a “Hire Pelosi” sign on the front of the Republican National Committee building. Whether it’s reverse psychology or just plain trolling, the GOP is clearly enjoying Pelosi’s perturbation. Her team fired back at McCarthy, recalling his bid—aborted at the last minute—to replace former Speaker John Boehner. “I think Congressman McCarthy has demonstrated in multiple ways his inability to measure the support of his colleagues #AlmostSpeaker,” tweeted Drew Hammill, Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff.
SPOTLIGHT ON POLITICS: Price pick roils Georgia politics
Rep. Tom Price‘s nomination for Health and Human Services secretary eliminates a possible Georgia gubernatorial candidate and creates a potentially competitive seat in Atlanta’s northern suburbs.
As recently as a month ago, Price seemed to be eyeing a run for governor in 2018. A consultant with ties to Price formed an independent state committee called PRICE PAC. Its lone contribution by late October was $95,000 from Price’s congressional campaign, and it spent most of that money on direct-mail for down-ballot races.
Even without Price, there is no shortage of GOP contenders for the seat of term-limited Gov. Nathan Deal. Among the elected officials who could run are retiring Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, and Secretary of State Brian Kemp.
The same can be said of the list of potential candidates to replace Price. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution identified nearly a dozen Republicans considering bids, including several state legislators and Karen Handel, a Price ally who ran for governor in 2010 and Senate in 2014.
But Democrats could target the seat in a special election. While Mitt Romney carried the 6th District with 61 percent in 2012, Trump won it with just 48 percent of the vote.