In Building Support for Farm Bill, Speaker Pursues Rural-Urban Alliance
By DAVID ROGERS
Wall Street Journal
WASHINGTON — More Armani than Carhartt, Speaker Nancy Pelosi brings her style of coalition politics to the House farm-bill debate this week as she tries to balance the need for change in federal agricultural programs with the Democrats’ dream of reviving the party’s historic urban-rural alliances.
It’s a goal the San Francisco liberal has pursued since the early 1980s, when as chair of the state party she traveled California’s back roads with her children in tow, working to bridge the political gap between rural inland and more-urban coastal interests. In 2003, as House Democratic leader, she created a working group to address rural concerns. And last winter, Ms. Pelosi became the first House speaker in decades to address the National Farmers Union convention, where she promised the disaster aid delivered this spring.