Martin Bashir | November 13, 2012
>>> paul ryan is back, though perhaps a little chastened by some of his strongest supporters. don't believe me though, believe the voters in his hometown of janesville because they voted against him twice. the milwaukee journal sentinel reports he lost his hometown of janesville by ten points for congress and 25 points for vice president. well, they do know him best. joining us now from washington, nbc's kelly o'donnell. good afternoon.
>> hello, martin.
>> paul ryan won his district by his smallest margin to date and the severe austerity he supported does not seem to have won re-election. does he return to congress perhaps with a little less swagger albeit retaining his 6% body fat?
>> well, we have had some experience on capitol hill watching those who have lost a big election come back. you had john mccain four years ago, john kerry eight years ago. so it is different because during the weeks after he was put on the romney ticket, there was a lot offed a you'll lation for paul ryan here. it is different now. and he comes back and we expect he'll get his same position as the head of the house budget committee . that requires a special waiver because he's had that job for the maximum amount of time. he's still well-regarded by his republican colleagues and i think you get a sense that he's been through a challenging election period. we'll have to see how much of a public posture he wants to have going forward, and so ryan is back, but we don't yet have a measure of how influential he will be.
>> what sway then, kelly , do you think he has in the fiscal cliff negotiations?
>> everything we're getting a sense of is that this will be a negotiation that at least on front stage will be between speaker boehner and president obama . and so boehner is certainly influenced by ryan's knowledge of the budget, but i don't think that this is going to be a case where he will be at the bargaining table, if you will. so, again, republicans respect what he knows about the budget, the budget that was passed that bears his name is really old news in many ways now. they know they have to move off of that and do some new things.
>> yes, because that didn't really help him in the presidential election , did it?
>> well, that's something that certainly people brought up and it became a part of the campaign which, you know, perhaps didn't work in their favor.
>> okay. one last topic, if i may, kelly , what can you tell us about the future of house minority leader nancy pelosi because she's made some comments this morning, i believe.
>> she is planning to tell all of us what her future is tomorrow morning . nan nancy pelosi has been the leader of democrats in the house. she was the first woman speaker, and there was some questions of whether she would stay on in a leadership position in the new congress because she had not been able to win as many democratic seats as they had hoped even though she raised a lot of money and did a lot of work for candidates. so that question was there, should the democrats have a new leader? perhaps steny hower, perhaps jim clyburn , what we don't know is what her final decision is. tonight there's a whole series of meetings and get-togethers as members come back and she will make it known tomorrow. that's something to stay tuned for.
>> any hint of what she's going to say?
>> i would say her posture coming back, she certainly looks confident and engaged. that might lead me to think she wants to stay in power, but we don't know for certain.
>> absolutely. nbc's kelly o'donnell, thanks so much.