Scrolling Headlines:

: Nineteen turnovers sink UMass men’s basketball in loss to Fordham Saturday -

January 21, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls to Fordham behind strong defensive effort by the Rams -

January 21, 2017

UMass hockey can’t take advantage of strong start in 6-1 loss to Boston College -

January 21, 2017

High-powered Eagles soar past UMass -

January 21, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

Nancy Pelosi, Congress’s shining light

In the spirit of the historic transparency and bipartisanship that the current administration has given us, I wanted to spend some time focusing on how we got to this point as a country, by attributing our successes to all of the great work done by Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House. Her work has been so great that it will no doubt ensure Democrats retaining their majorities in Congress in 2010.

Since the day Pelosi became Speaker of the House in 2006, she has accomplished many notable things in addition to being the first woman to hold the position. One such accomplishment I am sure will never be matched by any conservative, is the record approval ratings she has guided Congress to. On multiple occasions under Pelosi’s leadership, she has managed to get the approval rating of congress to 18 percent, both in May of 2008 and August 2007 according to Gallup.

For most politicians, accomplishing these kinds of historic approval ratings would be enough, but not for Nancy Pelosi. On the day of her acceptance speech as Speaker, before she even knew she would lead an historic Congress, she set mile high goals for herself and her congressional counterparts. I feel it doesn’t get talked about enough and I would like to examine just how successful Pelosi has been as Speaker using her own lofty standards.

One of the most important things Pelosi thought to say during her acceptance speech in 2006 was the following, “I accept this gavel in the spirit of partnership, not partisanship, and I look forward to working with you Mr. Boehner and the Republicans in the Congress on behalf of the American people.” She clearly set out to accomplish “partnership” with Republicans and she has quietly accomplished this goal.

Take House Minority Leader John Boehner’s veiw of her speech from September 28, 2008 when she tried to gain support for a vote on the Wall Street rescue plan: “I do believe that we could have gotten there today, had it not been for the partisan speech that the Speaker gave on the floor of the House.” What has all the bipartisanship from Pelosi led to? Look no further then the recent health care reform passed by the House supported by a whopping one Republican. Needless to say, both parties have come together as one under Pelosi and had it not been for her leadership, that vote would never have been possible.

But Pelosi’s leadership is not defined by bipartisanship alone. Her successes reach far beyond that. She also demanded fiscal responsibility from Congress after the fiscal recklessness of Bush and his fellow Republicans. She said this in her acceptance speech, which I believe she has stuck to 100 percent since the day she became Speaker: “After years of historic deficits, this 110th Congress will commit itself to a higher standard: pay as you go, no new deficit spending. Our new America will provide unlimited opportunity for future generations, not burden them with mountains of debt.”

Clearly you can see Pelosi and her fellow Democrats knew the historic deficits of Bush were far too big for our future generations to handle. She knew spending money we don’t have was an unsustainable policy. That is of course why she made it one of their top priorities to balance the budget.

When voters think about their decisions heading into the upcoming elections of 2010 and 2012, the fact that Pelosi has overseen Congress pass legislation that has led to the largest deficit of all time should be ignored. Voters should also ignore the fact that the deficit is now so big that it is larger then all the deficits of past administrations combined. These facts should be ignored because this clearly isn’t Pelosi’s fault at all. She set goals for herself and her Congress, and she has worked her hardest to meet all of them.

As anyone can see, my disdain for Pelosi in the past has clearly been unwarranted. My attacks on her work as Speaker have always been without merit. She wanted Congress to work together and she has accomplished it. She rightfully attacked Bush for deficit spending and she has worked daily to shrink it. Congress’ record approval ratings under her leadership only reinforce that point. It is uninformed idiots like me who still attack her, even knowing all of these feats, that don’t get that this is the direction the country wants. This is a moderate country leaning left. Pelosi understands that, and her leadership is going to ensure majorities in 2010 and 2012 for Democrats.

Alex Perry is a Collegian columnist. He can be reached at amperry@student.umass.edu.

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