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Thread: Pelosi and the WOCS

  1. #1
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    Pelosi and the WOCS

    Democrats worry about long-term implications of the feud between the speaker and the freshman firebrand.

    Pelosi and Ocasio-Cortez clash drags on, threatening Democratic unity


    An internal battle among House Democrats took on new life Thursday as lawmakers turned against each other over questions of race, with the latest flare-up ignited by controversial comments from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her chief of staff.

    Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her lieutenants tried to move on but Democrats from several different factions within the party dug in, refusing to set aside lingering tensions that first broke into the open two weeks ago during a massive blowup over a border funding package.

    The harmony between the two wings of the caucus is in jeopardy as moderates and progressives struggle for control of the agenda — a clash that Democratic leaders have sought to avoid since gaining the House majority — and threatens their chief priority: taking on President Donald Trump.

    "There is a generational difference and an ideological difference, both of them defined by the urgency to do something immediately," said Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), noting one undercurrent is the ever-widening divide between the rank and file and leadership over impeaching Trump.

    New fault lines developed Thursday from what was initially a generational spat between Pelosi and a group of younger progressive upstarts that flared up over the weekend. Some members of the Congressional Black Caucus criticized Ocasio-Cortez and one even accused her of "using the race card” for suggesting this week that Pelosi was “singling out” women of color to criticize.

    "What a weak argument," said Rep. Lacy Clay (D-Mo.), who is facing a primary backed by a group closely aligned with Ocasio-Cortez. "Because you can’t get your way, and because you are you getting pushed back, you resort to using the race card. Unbelievable.”

    And her chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, has come under fire for a flurry of tweets criticizing Pelosi, endorsing primary challengers to Democratic incumbents and comparing moderate Democrats to pro-segregationist lawmakers from decades ago.

    After weeks of squabbling, some Democrats are concerned that the rift could have lasting implications. The caucus is gearing up to navigate through three weeks of tricky issues, from former special counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony to new immigration legislation.

    "We have a job to do and just being in the thick of wanting to beat this president, there's nothing more important than that," said Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), fresh off a short-lived presidential bid. "Anything that we do that's not focused on beating Donald Trump could hurt us."

    But members also recognize they’re caught up in a defining moment — the movement versus the matriarch.

    “The lesson is that we are in a very different world right now. And a freshman doesn’t necessarily have to sit back and mind their own business,” said Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky.). “When you have 4 million followers on social media, you are a force that has to be respected. But if you have that power, you also have to understand what you want to do with it, and if it’s to blow things up, that’s not helpful.”

    Asked about Ocasio-Cortez’s comments, Pelosi suggested the New York Democrat and other freshman progressive women in her so-called squad may be upset that the speaker chided members — and their staff — in a private caucus meeting Wednesday.

    “They took offense because I addressed, at the request of my members, an offensive tweet that came out of one of the member’s offices that referenced our Blue Dogs and our New Dems essentially as segregationists,” Pelosi said, referencing a now-deleted tweet by Ocasio-Cortez’s chief of staff.

    “How they’re interpreting and carrying it to another place is up to them,” Pelosi added. “But I’m not going to be discussing it any further.”

    Pelosi’s comments follow a days-long public spat with Ocasio-Cortez, which started when the speaker questioned how much influence Ocasio-Cortez and her allies, Reps. Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley, actually have. Ocasio-Cortez fired back, first in a series of tweets and then in an interview with The Washington Post accusing Pelosi of being “outright disrespectful” for the “explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”

    Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal said she plans to raise her concerns with Pelosi in an upcoming meeting about broader issues — specifically how singling out freshman women of color like Ocasio-Cortez works to “diminish progressive power” in the caucus.

    “I don’t think the speaker is used to having a group of members who has bigger Twitter followings than her. I don’t think most of us are,” Jayapal said in an interview Thursday.

    “God, it totally resonates with me, absolutely,” Jayapal said when asked if she agreed with Ocasio-Cortez’s comments about being singled out as a woman of color. "We women of color have faced this for such a long time... We are in a body of mainly old white men. You don't get to be here without having dealt with that, most people."

    Pelosi gave a forceful speech during Wednesday’s closed-door meeting, urging Democrats not to target each other publicly on Twitter — remarks that were seen pointed at progressives specifically.

    Pelosi also told members to urge their aides to “think twice” before tweeting, a line that was a direct reference to Ocasio-Cortez’s chief of staff, according to multiple Democratic sources.

    Chakrabarti, meanwhile, was strongly criticized for his tweets, claiming that moderate Democrats were responsible for oppressing minorities.

    “Instead of 'fiscally conservative but socially liberal,' let's call the New Democrats and Blue Dog Caucus the 'New Southern Democrats.' They certainly seem hell bent to do to black and brown people today what the old Southern Democrats did the 40s,” Chakrabarti wrote in the tweet.

    Ocasio-Cortez declined to comment on her chief’s contentious tweets on the issue on Thursday, ignoring questions about whether she had plans to take any disciplinary action — as some other Democrats have called for.

    “I’m offering three amendments today, I have not been paying attention to this. No one has told me anything personally, so I don’t really have a comment,” Ocasio-Cortez said in an interview.

    Rep. Terri Sewell, a vice chair of the New Democrats, has reached out to Ocasio-Cortez several times to discuss Chakrabarti's controversial tweets but has not heard back, according to an account relayed by Rep. Derek Kilmer during a meeting in Pelosi's office on Wednesday.

    Kilmer, who is chairman of the New Dems, recounted the story during Pelosi's weekly meeting with leaders of the various Democratic interest groups within the caucus, according to two sources with knowledge of the exchange.

    Sewell, who is African American, represents Birmingham, Ala., a city with a lengthy and at times horrific civil rights legacy. On Thursday, she released a statement strongly criticizing the comparison of New Dems to pro-segregationists.

    In an interview, she said, “I’m not going to talk about my own private talks with members. But it’s enough to say that I’ve issued my statement about the tweet that her chief of staff did. I was highly offended by that — I represent the Deep South.”

    But Ocasio-Cortez disputed the account that she had ignored a phone call from Sewell: “I do know that she called me once and I returned her call. We missed each other right before I went to the border.”

    Sewell’s office declined to comment further about the two members’ private conversations.

    Rep. Anthony Brown (D-Md.), a progressive and member of the Congressional Black Caucus, said he was shocked when one of his colleagues brought up Ocasio-Cortez’s comments while they sat on the floor earlier Thursday and asked how he felt about it.

    “Seriously? It’s just not an issue in the larger caucus, it just isn’t,” he said, calling it “a distraction” from policy wins like this week’s massive defense bill, which he said is the most progressive in decades.

    “The caucus is working, and sometimes it’s not pretty, and it gets a little heated and tense,” Brown said. “What we’re doing right now is an example of the caucus is actually working.”
    May we raise children who love the unloved things - the dandelion, the worm, the spiderlings.
    Children who sense the rose needs the thorn and run into rainswept days the same way they turn towards the sun...
    And when they're grown and someone has to speak for those who have no voice,
    may they draw upon that wilder bond, those days of tending tender things and be the one.

  2. #2
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    Wow!! And this is Politico, not Fox. I thought only Fox reported on AOC. I must have been misinformed.
    If it pays, it stays

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    AOC's chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, is a provocateur who has made some "controversial" tweets in the past,
    And her chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, has come under fire for a flurry of tweets criticizing Pelosi, endorsing primary challengers to Democratic incumbents and comparing moderate Democrats to pro-segregationist lawmakers from decades ago.

    [....]

    Chakrabarti, meanwhile, was strongly criticized for his tweets, claiming that moderate Democrats were responsible for oppressing minorities.
    as well as violated federal election law, organizing work-arounds for disclosure requirements. But he continues as her chief of staff, so it's fair to say he represents her.

    Pelosi's worried about losing the House, but I don't think AOC & Co. care.
    "The way I see it, there's always, c'mon, there's always money. It's there." —Elizabeth Warren, explaining socialism.

    “The interesting thing about the Green New Deal is it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all.... We really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing.” —Saikat Chakrabarti, then AOC's Chief of Staff.

    "We have to stop demonizing people and realize the biggest terror threat in this country is white men, most of them radicalized to the right, and we have to start doing something about them." —CNN's Don Lemon, showing how to stop demonizing people.

    "What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.” ―Robert F. Kennedy.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frostbit View Post
    Wow!! And this is Politico, not Fox. I thought only Fox reported on AOC. I must have been misinformed.
    You are misinformed. Poor reading comprehension will do that.

    On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
    -H. L. Mencken

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norm dePlume View Post
    You are misinformed. Poor reading comprehension will do that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Jingo View Post
    You may be onto something. It looks like NPR may be practically ignoring her altogether. They haven't done a story about her in over a month!

    Check out Fox. I'm sure they have your daily dose of AOC.
    Hate on.
    If it pays, it stays

  6. #6
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    Democratic lawmaker unloads on Ocasio-Cortez, chief of staff for 'using the race card'


    Rep. Wm. Lacy Clay (D-Mo.) unloaded on Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday for "using the race card” after Ocasio-Cortez accused Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) of being racially insensitive.

    Clay, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, fumed at Ocasio-Cortez and the group of progressive lawmakers that includes Reps. Rashida Tlaib (Mich.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.) and Ayanna Pressley (Mass.).

    “What a weak argument, because you can’t get your way and because you’re getting pushback you resort to using the race card? Unbelievable. That’s unbelievable to me,” Clay said. “I could care less. I could really care less. I agree with the Speaker. Four people, four votes out of 240 people, who cares.”

    In an interview with The Washington Post on Wednesday, Ocasio-Cortez accused Pelosi of singling out newly elected women of color.

    Pelosi had previously been dismissive of the four freshman female lawmakers, saying that despite their large presence on social media, they only account for four votes in the Democratic caucus.

    “It shows you how weak their argument is when they have to resort and direct racist accusations toward Speaker Pelosi … it’s very disappointing to me,” Clay said.

    The Missouri Democrat also described Ocasio-Cortez’s chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti and the progressive group Justice Democrats as “juvenile” and “ignorant.”

    The Justice Democrats have endorsed a progressive primary challenger against Clay and other centrist Democrats. Chakrabarti last week sent out a tweet comparing centrist Democrats to "new Southern Democrats" that "certainly seem hell bent to do to black and brown people today what the old Southern Democrats did in the 40s."

    “It shows you how ignorant and little history [Chakrabarti] knows, how ignorant he is to American history. How dare he,” Clay said.

    “They’re missing the fact that we have a very thin margin of a majority that we’re operating under and apparently it doesn’t matter to Justice Democrats, they just want to get skins. They want to score points for whatever reason. But I find it juvenile, their tactics, I find their ignorance to be beyond belief about American history and about who are really segregationists. And so how dare they try to play the race card at this point, it shows you the weakness of their arguments.”
    May we raise children who love the unloved things - the dandelion, the worm, the spiderlings.
    Children who sense the rose needs the thorn and run into rainswept days the same way they turn towards the sun...
    And when they're grown and someone has to speak for those who have no voice,
    may they draw upon that wilder bond, those days of tending tender things and be the one.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frostbit View Post
    Hate on.
    It's grandma and her bratty grandkids.

    Or a power play for control of the Democratic Party, the upstarts using their favorite, tried-and-true tool, the ad hominem attack, most especially the race card.

    We'll have to see if it works. For Pelosi to get scored by the race card has to sting, like Robespierre getting the guillotine.
    "The way I see it, there's always, c'mon, there's always money. It's there." —Elizabeth Warren, explaining socialism.

    “The interesting thing about the Green New Deal is it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all.... We really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing.” —Saikat Chakrabarti, then AOC's Chief of Staff.

    "We have to stop demonizing people and realize the biggest terror threat in this country is white men, most of them radicalized to the right, and we have to start doing something about them." —CNN's Don Lemon, showing how to stop demonizing people.

    "What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.” ―Robert F. Kennedy.

  8. #8
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    She's not only a racist, she's also trying to kill them...

    AOC complains about Pelosi barbs, cites death threats

    Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez complained Thursday that it was unfair for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to single her and three other female freshman Democratic lawmakers out for criticism — and warned that the repercussions could be dangerous.

    “It’s singling out four individuals, and knowing the media environment that we’re operating in, knowing the amount of death threats that we get, knowing the amount of concentration of attention, I think it’s just worth asking why,” she told CNN.

    Pelosi on Wednesday warned AOC along with Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar and Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley to knock off the Twitter attacks on their fellow Democrats.

    The four progressive Democrats — all women of color — have been at odds with Pelosi, a long-time San Francisco liberal who has emerged as an unlikely voice of moderation in her caucus.

    The New York lawmaker’s comments came before Pelosi returned to the subject of her beef with the so-called “Squad,” saying that she had the support of her entire caucus when she upbraided the four for critical comments on Twitter, since deleted, by an AOC staffer.
    May we raise children who love the unloved things - the dandelion, the worm, the spiderlings.
    Children who sense the rose needs the thorn and run into rainswept days the same way they turn towards the sun...
    And when they're grown and someone has to speak for those who have no voice,
    may they draw upon that wilder bond, those days of tending tender things and be the one.

  9. #9
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    This sounds like high school.

    Almost every woman I've known purely hated the gossip, innuendo, and covert sniping. Guys may have a much different experience.

    For whatever reason, girls and women have a hard time just shutting up and walking away.
    "Alexa, slaughter the fatted calf."

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frostbit View Post
    Hate on.
    That doesn't say what you claim it said. Derp on, half-wit.

    On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
    -H. L. Mencken

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