Two Action Items: Pelosi and Olbermann

It's a Saturday morning, but these action items need your attention.  We have the chance to help two of the closest friends to progressives anywhere - one in the leadership of the House of Representatives, and the other in the media.  You know who I'm talking about.  Nancy Pelosi and Keith Olbermann.

Keeping Nancy Pelosi as the Top Democrat in the House

First, Nancy Pelosi.  I can't tell you how excited I was to hear that Speaker Pelosi will run to keep her spot in the House as the top Democrat when the new Congress convenes in January.  As everyone knows by now, the Speaker announced her move via twitter.

Pelosi to run for Dem Leader

I honestly thought that we'd lose Nancy Pelosi as a leader after the election, and I am thrilled to find out that we will not.  As I said the day after the election, America owes Speaker Pelosi a debt of gratitude for her leadership making progress and using her power to help the little guy, and history will vindicate her for doing the right thing when it was needed even in the face of brutal political winds and demonization by the Right.  I am simply ecstatic that she has decided to seek a leadership position in the next Congress, and will have the opportunity to be Speaker again post 2012.

Please call your Democratic member (or member-elect) of the House and urge them to support Nancy Pelosi as Democratic leader.  A House member directory is available on House.gov, but for new members, you will need to call their campaign offices.

Let's bring Keith back

Now, onto Keith Olbermann.  Olbermann was suspended without pay from MSNBC for making unapproved political donations to three candidates.  This caused a lot of outrage on the left, as it should have.  Keith's integrity as a journalist was never compromised because of those donations.  However, as Rachel Maddow explains below, the donations were subject to pre-approval by management per the rules at MSNBC and NBC, and the suspension was not because of the donations per se but because of Keith's failure to get the approval.



As Rachel says, MSNBC is not a political operations, and everyone there is subject to the rules, and should be. As Rachel also says, the point has been made, and it's time to let Keith back to hosting Countdown again.  If you miss Keith, if you want him back, please call MSNBC at (212) 664-4444 and urge them to put him back in his timeslot, effective immediately.  When you call them, do not scream at them, do not threaten a boycott.  Politely and firmly deliver your message, and have your voice heard.