Nancy Pelosi on Principles & Values

Democratic Representative (CA-8)


A badge of honor having so many invested in one's failure

I learned this lesson explicitly from Nancy Pelosi, the first woman to be Speaker of the United States House of Representatives and someone I admire greatly. In the summer of 2019, she invited me on a congregational delegation to Ghana. During the flight she told me about her journey from her first campaign in 1987 when she was elected to Congress to becoming a highest-ranking female elected official in United States history, not once but twice.

"The amount of money spent on ads and anything else to try and take me down is mind boggling. "The truth is, it is a badge of honor to have this many people invested in one's failure. If they weren't afraid of your power, they wouldn't work so hard to erode it."

Source: This Is What America Looks Like, by Ilhan Omar, p.211-12 , Jul 27, 2021

It's not a normal day when people threaten to hang the Veep

A small but growing number of Republican lawmakers are propagating a false portrayal of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, brazenly arguing that the rioters who used flagpoles as weapons, brutally beat police officers and chanted that they wanted to hang Vice President Mike Pence were somehow acting peacefully in their violent bid to overturn Joe Biden's election.

One Republican called the rioters a "mob of misfits." Another suggested the sweeping federal investigation into the riot -- which has yielded more than 400 arrests and counting -- amounts to a national campaign of harassment. It's a turn of events that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, another target of the rioters, called "appalling" and "sick."

"I don't know of a normal day around here when people are threatening to hang the vice president of the United States or shoot the speaker, or injure so many police officers," said Pelosi, who has pushed for a bipartisan commission to investigate the riots.

Source: CTV News (Canadian TV Network) on Jan. 6th insurrection , May 13, 2021

Ordered Confederate statues/portraits removed from Capitol

[After George Floyd was killed by police in 2020, Pelosi] joined one of the protests sparked by Floyd's death, this one on the steps of Congress. Inside the Capitol she ordered the eleven Confederate leaders and portraits of four speakers who served in the confederacy removed from places of honor. Within weeks, the House passed, mostly along party lines, the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, a measure that would have reformed police practices, including a ban on chokeholds.
Source: Madam Speaker, by Susan Page, p.334 , Apr 20, 2021

I don't hate anyone; I pray for Trump all the time

[With Trump as President], Pelosi bristled when a conservative reporter asked if she hated the president. "I don't hate anybody," she replied, jabbing her finger at the reporter. "And as a Catholic, I resent your using the word 'hate' in a sentence that addresses me; I don't hate anyone." She told him she prays for the president "all the time."

Trump would scoff at that: "She never prayed for me in her life," Trump said when Pelosi authorized drafting articles of impeachment

Source: Madam Speaker, by Susan Page, p.267 , Apr 20, 2021

You can't negotiate unless you stipulate the facts

[Pelosi said], "Our Republican colleagues will agree with me when I say that we engage in a negotiation or discussion of how we're going to proceed, we always have to stipulate to a fact, whether it's a budget number, a time able.

Usually it's a budget number that is the floor or the ceiling. But you can't negotiate unless you stipulate to the facts. And what you are saying has no basis in fact. So if we're going to do anything together, we have to have the truth on the table."

Source: Madam Speaker, by Susan Page, p.262 , Apr 20, 2021

Donald Trump will be impeached forever

Let's be optimistic about the future, a future that will not have Donald Trump in the White House one way or another. Ten months from now we will have an election if we don't have him removed sooner. But, again, he'll be impeached forever.
Source: ABC This Week 2020 interviews on impeaching Trump , Jan 12, 2020

Impeachment showed "the power of the gavel"

Pelosi promised as speaker she would "show the power of the gavel." As the first year of Pelosi's second stint as speaker draws to a close the California Democrat took stock of whether she fulfilled her campaign trail promise. "Donald Trump thinks so," Pelosi told The Associated Press. "He just got impeached. He'll be impeached forever. No matter what the Senate does. He's impeached forever because he violated our Constitution," she said.
Source: Associated Press coverage of impeaching Trump , Dec 18, 2019

American voters choose president, not foreign government

For centuries, Americans have fought and died to defend democracy for the people. But, very sadly now, our founders' vision of a republic is under threat from actions from the White House. That is why today, as speaker of the House, I solemnly and sadly open the debate on the impeachment of the president of the United States. If we do not act now, we would be derelict in our duty. It is tragic that the president's reckless actions make impeachment necessary. He gave us no choice.

What we are discussing today is the established fact that the president violated the constitution. It is a matter of fact that the president is an ongoing threat to our national security and the integrity of our elections, the basis of our democracy. Hundreds of historians and legal scholars, regardless of party, have stated that the president committed impeachable offenses. All Americans agree that American voters should choose our president, not some foreign government.

Source: Speech to Congress on impeaching Trump , Dec 18, 2019

Tea Party is high-end funded: AstroTurf, not grassroots

The extent to which the movement's critics not only dismiss grassroots voters' grievances but the Tea Party's very legitimacy is amusing. Commenting on the April 15, 2009 rallies, then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "This [Tea Party] initiative is funded by the high end--we call it 'AstroTurf', it's not really a grassroots movement. It's AstroTurf by some of the wealthiest people in America to keep the focus on tax cuts for the rich instead of for the great middle class."

There's no question that some in the political establishment have tried to latch on to the Tea Party or manipulate the movement for their own benefit. Any Tea Partier could tell you this, and they all are aware of it precisely because maintaining their independence is so important. The movement is keenly aware of possible establishment-type interlopers and, if anything, is probably overly suspicious--in fact Tea Partiers are quite the opposite of being dupes, as critics such as Pelosi love to portray them.

Source: The Tea Party Goes to Washington, by Rand Paul, p. 13 , Feb 22, 2011

Prefers "Italian grandmother" to "San Francisco liberal"

Pelosi came from a political family, and her father and brother had both been mayors of Baltimore. After moving to San Francisco, marrying a businessman, having five children, and throwing herself into California politics, Pelosi had won a congressional seat representing San Francisco in 1987. Derided by Republicans as a "San Francisco liberal," which she was, Pelosi also was sometimes mocked for a wide-eyed, saccharine television persona. Pelosi tried to soften her image, referring to herself often as an "Italian grandmother," but she had a hard edge. She ran the House Democrats with a combination of charm and toughness, known for providing colleagues with chocolates and also for rules that punished them if they failed to follow the party line. In her climb to the party leadership, Pelosi had raised enormous sums of money, donating it to colleagues to build a bank of favors, and she had no problem challenging powerful Democrats or holding grudges against her rivals.
Source: The Thumpin': Rahm Emanuel, by Naftali Bendavid, Chapter 1 , May 8, 2007

Dems must continue to be known as champion of working people

As Democrats, we must convince the American people that we know them, we work for them every day, we understand their hopes, their dreams, the aspirations they have for their children, and the challenges that they face. That’s why it’s absolutely urgent that we win the election, that we take the country in a new direction for every one of those people -- for working families in America. Let us then go forth as a Democratic Party that is known as the champion of working people in our country.
Source: Annual 2006 Take Back America Conference , Jun 14, 2006

Priorities: prosperity, opportunity and security

My fellow Americans, you are the people we work for. These are the values we stand for. These are the priorities we fight for: prosperity, opportunity and security.
Source: Speech to the Democratic National Convention , Jul 30, 2004

Make America a light to the world-not a missile

As a nation we must show our greatness, not just our strength. America must be a light to the world, not just a missile. Forty-three years ago today, as a college student standing in the freezing cold outside this Capitol Building, I heard President Kennedy issue this challenge in his inaugural address: “My fellow citizens of the world,” he said, “ask not what America will do for you, but what, working together, we can do for the freedom of man.” There is great wisdom in that, but in it there is also greater strength for our country and the cause of a safer world. Instead of alienating our allies, let us work with them and international institutions, so that together we can prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and keep them out of the hands of terrorists.
Source: Democratic Response to the 2004 State of the Union address , Jan 20, 2004

Religious affiliation: Catholic.

Pelosi : religious affiliation:

The Adherents.com website is an independent project and is not supported by or affiliated with any organization (academic, religious, or otherwise).

What’s an adherent?

The most common definition used in broad compilations of statistical data is somebody who claims to belong to or worship in a religion. This is the self-identification method of determining who is an adherent of what religion, and it is the method used in most national surveys and polls.

Such factors as religious service attendance, belief, practice, familiarity with doctrine, belief in certain creeds, etc., may be important to sociologists, religious leaders, and others. But these are measures of religiosity and are usually not used academically to define a person’s membership in a particular religion. It is important to recognize there are various levels of adherence, or membership within religious traditions or religious bodies. There’s no single definition, and sources of adherent statistics do not always make it clear what definition they are using.

Source: Adherents.com web site 00-ADH11 on Nov 7, 2000

Member of the Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues.

Pelosi is the chair of the Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues:

On April 19, 1977, 15 Congresswomen held the first meeting of the Congresswomen’s Caucus. In 1981, the Congresswomen invited their male colleagues to join the Caucus and changed the organization’s name to the Congressional Caucus for Women’s Issues. 24 newly elected Congresswomen arrived on Capitol Hill in 1993, nearly doubling the number of women in the Caucus in what became the “Year of the Woman.” In 1995, the House of Representatives voted to eliminate funding for offices and staff of caucus organizations on Capitol Hill. The Congresswomen reorganized themselves into a Members’ organization by the same name. As a result, male Members no longer belong to the Caucus.

Bipartisanship is the key to the Caucus’ strength and success. The legacy of its first 20 years is one of Democratic and Republican Congresswomen committed to improving the lives of women and families, and willing to put their partisan differences aside to do it. Twenty-four years after the Caucus’ founding, its membership has grown from 15 to 62. The 107th Congress also marks the first time that all women Members of the House have joined the Caucus.

Source: Women's Caucus website, WomensPolicy.org/Caucus/ 01-WC0 on Jul 15, 2001

Member of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus .

Pelosi is a member the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus:

The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), founded in May 16, 1994, by former Congressman Norman Mineta, is comprised of a formal group of Members of Congress (House and Senate) who have strong interests in promoting Asian Pacific American (APA) issues and advocating the concerns of APAs.

Source: CAPAC web site 02-CAPAC0 on Jan 21, 2001

Member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Pelosi is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus:

The members of the Progressive Caucus share a common belief in the principles of social and economic justice, non-discrimination, and tolerance in America and in our relationships with other countries. We also seek to embody and give voice to national priorities which reflect the interests and needs of all the American people, not just the wealthy and the powerful. Our purpose is to present thoughtful, positive, practical solutions to the problems confronting America and the world. In the post-Cold War era, we believe our nation’s priorities must change with the times and reflect new realities. Accordingly, we support curbs on wasteful, inefficient government spending at the Pentagon and elsewhere, a more progressive tax system in which wealthier taxpayers and corporations pay their fair share, adequate funding for social programs that are designed to extend help to low and middle-income Americans in need, and trade policies that increase the exports of more American products and encourage the creation of jobs and investment in America.

Source: Congressional Progressive Caucus website 07-CPC0 on Nov 6, 2007

Question Trump on Emoluments clause.

Pelosi signed questioning Trump on Emoluments clause

Excerpts from Letter from 17 Senators to Trump Organization: The Trump Organization's continuing financial relationship with President Trump raises concerns about whether it is a pass-through for income that violates the Constitution's two Emoluments Clauses: Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 on foreign Emoluments; and Article II, Clause 7 on domestic Emoluments. Please answer the following questions to help Congress understand:

Legal Analysis: (Cato Institute, "Emoluments Clause vs. Trump Empire," 11/29/16): The wording of the Emoluments clause points one way to resolution: Congress can give consent, as it did in the early years of the Republic to presents received by Ben Franklin. It can decide what it is willing to live with in the way of Trump conflicts. If it misjudges public opinion, it will pay a political price at the next election.

FOIA argument: (ACLU Center for Democracy, "FOIA Request," 1/19/17): We filed our first Freedom of Information Act request of the Trump Era, seeking documents relating President Trump's conflicts of interest relating to his business connections. When Trump took the oath of office, he didn't take the steps necessary to ensure that he and his family's business interests comply with the Constitution. Some have even argued that upon taking the oath of office, the new president is already violating the Emoluments Clause.

Source: Letter from 17 Senators 17LTR-EMOL on May 18, 2017

Certify 2020 Presidential election as fully & fairly counted.

Pelosi voted NAY blocking certification of the Electoral vote

Explanation of 1/6/21 Electoral Certification, by Emily Brooks, Washington Examiner:Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Paul Gosar led an objection to counting Electoral College votes from the state of Arizona, the first formal objection to state results in a series of moves that will delay the certification of Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election over President Trump. Cruz is advocating for an `emergency 10-day audit` of election returns in disputed states. The usually ceremonial joint session of Congress that convenes to count and accept Electoral College votes will be put on hold as the House and Senate separately debate the objection.