Pelosi never voiced any regrets about her single-minded focus on getting the health-care bill, and it’s doubtful she had any. As with FDR, one of her political heroes, the opposition she faced along with the demonization in the last election is proof-positive that she did the right thing. And lots of other Democrats seem to feel the same way, even those who were burned by their backing for the bill. When Politico went back in the wake of the SCOTUS decision to interview a dozen of the 2010 losers, they found “virtually no second-guessing and hardly any regrets.”
Taking on the famously prickly and punitive White House chief of staff was just one of many battles Pelosi fought to get the ACA across the finish line. She pushed back on the liberals in her caucus when they said the bill was worthless without a public option. ”She said no, this is fundamental change, this is historic, this is the last thread to weave into the social safety net,” recalls Matt Bennett, of the centrist Democratic group, Third Way.