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Nancy Pelosi

The new speaker of the House of Representatives is tough and disciplined. But the Democrats still have a vision problem

By James Crabtree   December 2006

The US Democrats have just won their first election in a decade. They took back control of the House of Representatives without a single of their incumbents being defeated. They also look likely to win back control of the Senate, something few commentators had predicted prior to polling. And the party made breakthroughs in vital regions, not least in western states like Colorado and Arizona.

Over the coming weeks, few elements of this victory will make more headlines than the party’s choice of speaker. Nancy Pelosi, a liberal from San Francisco, now leaps past Hillary Clinton, Condi Rice and Madeleine…

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