Apparently hoping to get on the House minority leader’s good side as he eyes a better leadership role within the Democratic Party, Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.) is defending Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) from what he calls “sexist” criticism.
Already the fourth highest-ranking Democrat in the House as chairman of the Democratic Caucus, Crowley admitted to having lofty political goals, but he told MSNBC host Katy Tur that he’s not counting on Pelosi vacating her current position at the top as minority leader.
“Nancy Pelosi is a lightning rod. The Republicans use her pretty effectively to rally support among their voters,” Tur pointed out to Crowley during their interview. “Are you concerned that she will be a liability for 2018 when Democrats could have a real opening to retake both houses of Congress?”
“I have heard that argument used so many times before,” Crowley replied. “I think it really reflects the sexism that still exists in politics today. I think Nancy Pelosi is held to a different standard than others are. The vilification of her, in a very sexist way quite frankly, is what’s led to this discussion.”
Tur then asked whether Crowley would consider taking her place if and when Pelosi stepped down. “Look, I’ve never shied away from my ambition that someday to advance in the House leadership,” Crowley said. “But what I will suggest is that is an issue for the entire caucus to take up at some point. Now is not the time to have that discussion; that’ll be after the elections in November of 2018.”
Crowley went on to praise Pelosi as an intelligent and diligent leader.
“Nancy Pelosi, as I’ve said before, is one of the smartest and hardest-working members of our caucus, and what we need to be doing right now as a caucus is focusing on the issues that will advance the cause of the American people.”
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