Even if the Democrats take back control of the House, Nancy Pelosi might be facing an uphill battle to regain her place as House Speaker.
The Washington Free Beacon reports that over 20 Democrats have expressed apprehension about backing the former speaker, and now, Democratic congressional candidate Rashida Tlaib — running to represent parts of Detroit and some of its suburbs — is expressing concern over Pelosi’s leadership as well.
When Tlaib sat for an interview with CNN’s John Berman on Thursday, Berman started by asking Tlaib about a comment she had made about the goals she shared for the Democratic Party with another rising star, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
He said, “Last spring when you were running, you said, ‘We are changing the Democrat party, getting rid of Democratic sellouts.’ Who are the sellouts?”
“I don’t know,” she chipped back, “but I can tell you this, the number one thing I was asked at the door was, ‘will you sell us out?'”
Berman didn’t let her off the hook, however.
“You must have had someone in mind there,” he said. “So who do you have in mind?”
Tlaib still wouldn’t name names, though.
“Some of my opponents that support large tax breaks for, you know, a hockey stadium downtown, that took away millions of dollars from schools, watching my neighborhood schools close down,” she responded.
“To me, that’s against the Democratic values. And to me, that’s selling out.”
Berman then directed his attention to Pelosi. Even if Democrats are not in the House majority, he said, they will have to elect a leadership structure. Since Tlaib’s election in November was virtually assured when she defeated a crowded field in Tuesday’s Democratic primary and will face no Republican opposition in November, according to CNN, she is going to have a voice in who that leadership will be.
“When you are elected…. will you vote for Nancy Pelosi?” he asked.
Tlaib took a second and said, “Probably not… that’s my answer.”
“Look, for me, I need someone that, again, is connected with the different levels of poverty that’s going on. The fact that there’s structures and barriers for working families in my district that need to be dismantled, and supporting big banks, and supporting efforts that I don’t think put the people first is troubling,” she said.
“I need someone that fully understands why I’m so passionate about those issues.”
Berman pressed her one more time, “Is she one of the people you’re referring to as a Democratic sellout?”
Tlab responded, “Look, I don’t know. All I can tell you is she doesn’t speak about the issues that are important to the families of the 13th Congressional District, and they are a priority for me.”
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