The Bay Area’s own Nancy Pelosi is turning out to be one of the most effective House speakers in decades. Although President Obama deserves credit for considerable perseverance, health-care reform would have never happened had it not been for Pelosi. Republicans love to ridicule her and use her as a target, but the reality is: They fear her. And for good reason. She pulled off what no Democratic house speaker had been able to accomplish in nearly a half-century — and may have saved her party from a humiliating defeat this November by providing it with a huge victory to run on. One thing is for sure, neither her opponents nor fellow liberals will ever underestimate her again.