For House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), disagreement with President Obama often takes the form of silence.
While rank-and-file House Democrats have been outspoken in taking the White House to task over issues as diverse as foreclosure prevention, environmental protection and funding the federal government, Pelosi has stayed quiet or shifted her talking points to attacks on the GOP.
The intention is to stay united with the president, and not let Republicans or other groups take advantage of any divide between the White House and congressional Democrats.
Pelosi’s tactics can be seen clearly in the decision by a broad coalition of California Democrats to urge Obama in writing last week to take bolder steps to prevent home foreclosures, which are endemic in much of the state.
“The administration has simply not done a darn thing to help my constituents,” Democratic Rep. Dennis Cardoza told reporters, summarizing the sentiments of many Democrats regarding the president’s housing policies.
Pelosi did not sign the letter — something a spokesman described as her custom on group letters to the administration. Instead, the minority leader is preparing a similar letter of her own, the spokesman said, although the contents of that message have yet to be released.