Nancy Pelosi's ridiculously over-the-top response to questions about the coronavirus stimulus

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi isn't used to being questioned about her strategic decisions. And boy did it show in a hugely contentious interview with Wolf Blitzer on Tuesday, when the CNN anchor simply pressed Pelosi on her approach to a coronavirus stimulus package deal.

Posted: Oct 14, 2020 12:19 PM

(CNN) -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi isn't used to being questioned about her strategic decisions. And boy did it show in a hugely contentious interview with Wolf Blitzer on Tuesday, when the CNN anchor simply pressed Pelosi on her approach to a coronavirus stimulus package deal.

Here's how it started:

Blitzer: Even members of your own caucus, Madam Speaker, want to accept this deal, $1.8 trillion, Congressman Ro Khanna for example. But let met just quote Ro Khanna, a man you know well. I assume you admire him. He's a Democrat.

And he just said this. He said "People in need can't wait until February, $1.8 trillion is significant and more than twice the Obama stimulus. Make a deal, put the ball in McConnell court."

So what do you say to Ro Khanna?

Pelosi: What I say to you is, I don't know why you're always an apologist. And many of your colleagues, apologists for the Republican position. Ro Khanna, that's nice. That isn't what we're going to do and nobody's waiting till February.

It went downhill from there. Asked if she had spoken to President Donald Trump about the possibility of a coronavirus stimulus deal, Pelosi said she doesn't "speak to the President." Pressed on why not -- given the suffering of people in desperate need of a stimulus deal to keep their business open or pay their bills -- Pelosi responded this way: "What makes me amused if it weren't so sad, is how you all think that you know more about the suffering of the American people than those of us who are elected by them to represent them at that table."

Uh, OK.

Pelosi wasn't done. "Let me say this with all due respect, with all due respect, and you know we've known each other a long time, you really don't know what you're talking about," she said as Blitzer continued to ask why the $1.8 trillion deal proposed by the White House wasn't good enough.

And she ended the interview with snark -- telling Blitzer ,"Thank you for sensitivity to our constituents' needs" and then when he responded that he was aware of their needs because 'I see them on the street begging for food, begging for money," the Speaker of the House said this: "Have you fed them? We feed them, we feed them."

On the whole, it was a decidedly embarrassing performance by the Speaker of the House. And I'll note here that I believe Pelosi to be the best congressional strategist of her generation -- bar none.

But this was a disaster.

Pelosi's position in the interview appeared to be that Blitzer wasn't allowed to ask her any questions about her unwillingness to accept the White House's latest stimulus deal because, uh, he wasn't the one negotiating it? And that by asking basic questions -- like why she continues to hold out for what she believes to be a better deal and whether she has spoken with Trump -- that Blitzer was an "apologist" for Republicans. Say what?

What about the prominent Democrats Blitzer cited who have been pushing -- publicly and privately -- Pelosi to make a deal? Well, according to Pelosi they don't matter either because they aren't the ones negotiating it. (Sidebar: I am sure Pelosi's California colleague -- Ro Khanna -- appreciated her condescending "that's nice" comment about his support for a deal.)

This was all bad from Pelosi. Why? Maybe because she feels the pressure from her colleagues to find a way to "yes" on the stimulus package amid increasing signs that the economy badly needs another shot in the arm. Maybe some other unknown reason. Or no reason at all.

But the point is this: If you are the Speaker of the House and agree to an interview in the midst of a contentious debate over a coronavirus stimulus package three weeks before a presidential election, you can't act surprised -- or outraged -- when you get asked about the coronavirus stimulus package and whether or not you've spoken to the President of the United States about it.

Those are not Republican apologist questions. They are fair ones. And ones that Pelosi should have been prepared to answer rather than snark at Blitzer and act as though he was doing something untoward.

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2020 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

Terre Haute
Clear
83° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 82°
Robinson
Clear
82° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 82°
Indianapolis
Partly Cloudy
79° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 79°
Rockville
Clear
82° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 81°
Casey
Clear
82° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 81°
Brazil
Clear
83° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 82°
Marshall
Clear
83° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 82°
Nice Weather Continues
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1387904

Reported Deaths: 25505
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook55597610438
DuPage923281316
Will769071031
Lake683241011
Kane59394804
Winnebago34070501
Madison30911526
McHenry29179294
St. Clair28287519
Peoria23443340
Champaign21094154
Sangamon19075237
McLean18544187
Tazewell17217304
Rock Island15238328
Kankakee14536216
Kendall1327198
LaSalle12768249
Macon10992211
DeKalb10101121
Vermilion10000141
Adams8667126
Williamson7573134
Whiteside7197174
Boone682977
Ogle620683
Grundy598778
Clinton578791
Coles5765100
Knox5640153
Jackson510065
Henry507470
Livingston489691
Woodford482382
Stephenson481585
Macoupin478288
Effingham476672
Franklin454678
Marion4511117
Jefferson4418122
Monroe438094
Lee419453
Randolph416387
Fulton405259
Logan396263
Morgan393282
Christian383875
Montgomery379274
Bureau378283
Fayette322155
Perry319960
Iroquois313267
McDonough290451
Jersey271652
Douglas260536
Saline260157
Lawrence241127
Shelby232437
Union227040
Crawford214425
Bond208724
Cass203127
Ford188648
Warren183748
Clark183633
Jo Daviess182724
Pike181753
Wayne180853
Hancock180231
Carroll178037
Richland176940
Edgar176240
White170226
Washington164825
Moultrie162928
De Witt157329
Mason154145
Piatt152314
Clay149543
Mercer149334
Johnson147216
Greene145334
Massac135840
Wabash135612
Cumberland130019
Menard124812
Jasper116118
Marshall108219
Hamilton84215
Schuyler7797
Brown7286
Pulaski7007
Stark64824
Edwards57712
Henderson53114
Calhoun5292
Scott4881
Putnam4863
Alexander47311
Gallatin4684
Hardin39112
Pope3274
Out of IL20
Unassigned02422

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 749835

Reported Deaths: 13752
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1031281779
Lake555181006
Allen41642691
St. Joseph36959564
Hamilton36537416
Elkhart29373459
Tippecanoe22871224
Vanderburgh22544400
Porter19339325
Johnson18412388
Hendricks17594317
Clark13202193
Madison13128344
Vigo12606253
LaPorte12400221
Monroe12175175
Delaware10949198
Howard10270225
Kosciusko9615119
Hancock8556145
Bartholomew8162157
Warrick7854156
Floyd7775180
Grant7230179
Wayne7158201
Boone6922103
Morgan6742141
Dubois6211118
Marshall6208116
Cass5997109
Henry5894108
Dearborn589078
Noble580287
Jackson508774
Shelby500897
Lawrence4735121
Gibson444293
Harrison441073
Clinton440455
DeKalb438985
Montgomery434890
Whitley406042
Huntington402281
Steuben399359
Miami392968
Jasper387054
Knox375790
Putnam372160
Wabash360683
Ripley346570
Adams344955
Jefferson335685
White330853
Daviess3031100
Wells295181
Decatur289992
Greene286685
Fayette284864
Posey273735
LaGrange273072
Scott269955
Clay266048
Washington245034
Randolph244683
Jennings235249
Spencer234231
Starke227858
Fountain219147
Sullivan214043
Owen211258
Fulton202142
Jay200932
Carroll193420
Orange188155
Perry187037
Rush175726
Vermillion174044
Franklin170235
Tipton166046
Parke149016
Pike138134
Blackford136132
Pulaski120347
Newton113036
Brown104043
Crawford102316
Benton101114
Martin91615
Warren83615
Switzerland8108
Union72810
Ohio57811
Unassigned0420