House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi acknowledged during a May 30 panel discussion that she finds it difficult to refer to the president of the U.S. by name.
The issue came up in the discussion after Pelosi made a reference to Trump by calling him "the new president of the United States," according to The Hill.
Panel moderator Scott Shafer of KQED remarked on Pelosi's roundabout phrasing: "I noticed you don’t say 'President Trump.'”
"It's hard," Pelosi admitted.
The former House Speaker went on to explain why Hillary Clinton's election loss had been so tough to bear: "I'm the highest ranking woman politically in our country. One of the things that I was looking forward to [on] election day was when finally there would be a woman who would be the highest ranking woman practically in the world as president of the United States."
On the impact of Clinton's defeat, Pelosi added: "It was a blow, I mean, for the country. And so it's hard because I don't know, from what I've seen, I don't know how much respect he has for the job."
However, Pelosi went on to say that she has not given up hope and is already looking ahead to the next election.
"What I'd like to see is a Democratic Congress in 2018 to be part of the checks and balances that our founders fought for in the Constitution of the United States," said Pelosi.
According to Nathan Gonzales, who manages nonpartisan analysis site Inside Election, Pelosi's hope could be realized. Gonzales told CNN that conditions appear to be emerging for the Democrats to regain control of the House.
"The midterm elections are still nearly a year and a half away, and the political dynamics could yet change, but we shouldn't ignore the fact that history and the current environment are merging together for a potentially great set of elections for Democrats in November 2018," Gonzales added, according to CNN.
Gonzales noted that he was adding nine more Republican seats to a list of likely competitive races and changing the projection on 10 seats from Republican to Democratic.
Looking back at past results, the president's party has lost seats in 18 of the past 20 midterm elections. The average seat loss across those 18 elections has been 33; the Democrats need to pick up 24 seats to regain the House.
On the other hand, districting changes mean that Republican voters are more evenly distributed across the country than Democratic voters, according to FiveThirtyEight. This suggests that Republicans may be able to win more seats than projected, even though Trump's popularity rating currently stands at 40 percent.