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Pelosi defends leadership following special election loss

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Debate has swirled among Democrats about what strategy to deploy: going all in with a nationwide anti-Trump agenda, or tailoring individual races to local economic issues in a bid to fix fraying connections between the Democratic Party and the common voter.

Voting for unopposed candidates "just seems like an extra step in the process that we could eliminate", said the sponsor of the Arkansas law, Rep. Charlotte Douglas, who hasn't faced any opposition the past two elections. Contrast that with Speaker Paul Ryan, who is rarely the focus of Democratic ads, but whose unfavorable rating is 54%. "If you stay mad, you stay angry, you're unproductive".

Democrats have now lost all four opportunities to win in special elections so far this year, following earlier losses in Republican-held districts in Kansas and Montana. So it's time for change.

Trump himself weighed in over Twitter Thursday morning with digs at Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of NY. He argued that when strategy doesn't work, there have to be repercussions at the top.

"It was probably one of the more disturbing caucus meetings that I've ever been in", added Rice. "So let's get started on winning the races where we really do have a chance". "That's the most important part".

For sure, obstructionism is a hallmark of whatever party is not in power, but to the voters, who rejected four more years of President Obama's leadership under Hillary Clinton, it appears the Democrats are acting as spoiled brat children, wanting to play by their rules or take the ball and go home.

Voters "want us to focus on jobs and the economy", Illinois Democratic Rep. Cheri Bustos told Fox News' "Happening Now" on Wednesday. "Nancy Pelosi is not the only reason that Ossoff lost".

For eight years living in the traditionally conservative area, Cox kept her mouth shut about politics until she was certain of her neighbors' leanings. "It's all of our responsibility", she told Fox News' "America's News HQ", amid renewed questions about Washington Democrats having failed to connect with working Americans. Veteran GOP ad-maker Brad Todd says that's because the San Francisco congresswoman is the personification of the liberal values they can't stomach. "She fits the stereotype of exactly what swing voters can't stand about the Democratic Party".

Democrats came up empty-handed nonetheless.

Pelosi allies have pushed back at the blame game and pointed to the improvement Democrats had in other special elections in Kansas, Montana and SC as evidence that their efforts to harness the resistance against Trump was working.

Ellison said the Georgia 6th was not as competitive as 64 other House seats that Democrats could win in 2018 to wrest control away from Republicans, adding, "They're the ones who better be anxious". After all, the seat's most recent incumbent, Tom Price, won the district last November by an overwhelming 23 points. "I want to get back in the majority", she said. But for now they said a different approach would rest on the party message - not Pelosi.

In conceding the race, Ossoff, a filmmaker and former political staffer, signaled that Democrats could learn from these races and prepare for the larger battle for control of the US Congress in 2018. "And usually they go after the most effective leaders". There will be another internal debate about whether to shift more to the left or move to the center, though some Democrats are wondering if their party brand just sucks. Last cycle alone, she raised $141.5 million.

Rep. Seth Moulton echoed her complaints in a Wednesday interview with CNN's Jake Tapper. The nearly certain knowledge that they won't is why Republicans slept well last night. "We don't agonize. We organize". She said Democrats will have to put forth their "message".

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