Just watched Nancy Pelosi on Morning Joe. She was impressive and the contrast with the occupant in the White House couldn’t have been starker.

That Trump, McConnell, and the Republican right have a special and vile animus toward her is understandable. But the ill feeling directed at her on our side of the political spectrum is less easy to explain. Even where she isn’t harshly criticized, she’s damned with faint praise or dismissed as not a blue dog.

Such characterizations strike me as examples of “not seeing the forest for the trees,” insofar as they fail to mention, forget about acknowledging, Pelosi’s crucial role in unifying Democrats and the larger movement against Trump since his election, not least at this moment. All of which makes me wonder if her critics’ commitment to popular front politics is anything more than a rhetorical gesture. The substance, after all, is awol.