OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
California Democrat Rep. Nancy Pelosi is not happy about the idea of a major third-party push shaking up the 2024 presidential election.
“No Labels is perilous to our democracy. I hesitate to say No Labels because they do have labels. They’re called no taxes for the rich. No child tax credit for children. They’re called let’s undo the Affordable Care Act,” the former House speaker told reporters.
Pelosi made her statement at a breakfast hosted by Third Way, a Democratic-centrist organization that has emerged as one of No Labels’ main adversaries this election cycle.
Twelve states have already allowed No Labels to access the ballot for November 2024. The far-left group MoveOn has asked state secretaries to look into No Labels’ potential status as a dark money organization.
Pelosi claimed that she had disregarded No Labels, even though the organization targeted her while she was the House Speaker, but that the election of 2024 will be different.
“When they jeopardize the reelection of Joe Biden as president of the United States, I can no longer remain silent on that,” she said.
Former Maryland governor and co-chair of No Labels, Larry Hogan (R) called it “disheartening to see Nancy Pelosi literally make things up about No Labels to score political points” in a statement. She assigns No Labels roles that they have never held.
The nonprofit is requesting access to the national ballot with the intention of putting together a unity ticket with a Republican and a Democrat as its leaders. The organization has not yet disclosed who would be in charge of such a ticket, as it is currently set up as a nonprofit organization exempt from donor disclosure requirements.
According to the most recent No Labels memo, there is an unprecedented desire for an independent or third-party candidate in this election cycle, in part due to the low favorability ratings of both former president Donald Trump and current president Joe Biden, the front-runners for both major parties.
Pelosi refuted the group’s premise, asserting that voters will re-join the fold once Biden is seen out on the campaign trail more frequently.
Third Way President Jonathan Cowan continued, saying that people express their dissatisfaction by showing early interest in third-party candidates. Nonetheless, he expressed his suspicion that as the general election campaign for the following year gets underway, interest in No Labels and independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. will decline.
Democrats are are getting VERY nervous about No Labels. Now even Nancy Pelosi is taking aim:
“No Labels is perilous to our Democracy…they jeopardize the reelection of Joe Biden as president of the United States.”
Remember, when the say something is a danger to “our democracy”… pic.twitter.com/yfokx0rGAH
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) November 2, 2023
Essentially, Pelosi and Third Way are worried about No Labels because they believe a moderately successful third-party candidate could garner enough electoral college votes to prevent either major party nominee from receiving the necessary majority of votes to win the presidency.
In this scenario, congressional delegations—of which Republicans control more than Democrats—would vote for the president, determining the outcome of the presidential election.
While it is improbable that a third-party candidate would receive enough electoral college votes, they worry that No Labels might give the Republican nominee the presidency if the election is forced upon the congressional delegations.
In a CNN interview, Ryan Clancy, chief strategist for No Labels, stated that while the organization was ready for such a scenario, it would not put up a ticket that it did not believe had a clear shot of winning the election.
Pelosi and No Labels have a somewhat tense history; during the Trump administration, the organization considered running a primary challenge against Pelosi and devised a strategy to paint her as a partisan and divisive figure.
She had, however, remained silent about the group’s 2024 plans up until Thursday. By doing this, she joined an increasing number of people and groups from various Democratic Party backgrounds who are intensifying their criticism of No Labels.