By Mike Lillis - 04/21/11 09:56 PM EDT
President Obama this week predicted that Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) hasn't seen her last stint as House Speaker, an indication Democrats remain confident they can win back control of the House sometime in the not-too-distant future.
"What can I say about Nancy Pelosi?" Obama told members of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) at the St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco on Thursday. "I think [she] will go down in history as one of the finest Speakers that we have ever had, and she is going to continue to be, in the future, one of the great Speakers that we’ve ever had."
Republicans currently hold a 48-seat advantage in the House, meaning Democrats would need to pick up at least 25 spots in the 2012 elections to regain power. Obama's unsolicited remarks made no reference to a timeline for returning Pelosi to the Speakership.
Obama and Pelosi have recently been at odds over a series of 2011 spending bills, with the president approving legislation to cut almost $40 billion in federal programs – reductions Pelosi opposed. Still, Obama was quick to shower praise on the California liberal for her role in ushering the Democrats' healthcare reform bill through a divided House last year.
"People really didn’t think we were going to get healthcare passed," Obama said, "but Nancy helped prove them wrong."
Obama is in San Francisco for a series of fundraisers following Wednesday's much-discussed virtual town-hall meeting at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif.