Filed Under:

Democratic Leader Pelosi to GOP Colleagues: 'Take Back Your Party'

Play associated audio

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi says she has urged Republican colleagues in Congress to "take back your party" from "anti-government ideologues" in their ranks.

"As I view the Republicans in Congress, I don't see them as a real reflection of many Republicans in our country," Pelosi said in an interview Wednesday with NPR's Steve Inskeep on Capitol Hill. "The Republican Party is the Grand Old Party. It's made enormous contributions to the success of our country. And it is a party that has embraced its leadership role when it has had the majority or the White House. ... While we may argue about the size of government, the Republican Party has not been a party that says, 'I want to destroy government.' "

In the interview, Pelosi continued:

"There are many members in the Republican caucus who do not believe in government. And bless their hearts, they act upon their beliefs. So day to day, we vote here on issues that eliminate government initiatives for clean air, clean water, food safety, public safety, public education, public transportation, public housing, public health, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security.

"They don't believe in a public role. And if you don't believe in a public role, then why do you even have to have taxes to pay for it? ... They're anti-government ideologues, and that's what the speaker has to deal with."

Pelosi, a California Democrat and former speaker, refused to comment directly on the job being done by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. But she said the legislation passed Tuesday in the House to avert the "fiscal cliff" — supported by Pelosi, most Democrats, Boehner, and just a minority of other House Republicans — "decoupled the ... hostage-taking on the part of the Republicans of, unless you give tax cuts to the rich, we're not giving tax cuts to the middle class. That's over now."

Pelosi continued:

"It's really sad. Because that's not who the Republican Party is. I tell them, 'Take back your party.' This is a great party. The country needs more than one-party dominance, as much as I believe the Democratic Party is the party for the middle class. ... We need to have a marketplace of ideas."

Copyright 2013 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

A Glimpse Of Listeners' #NPRpoetry — From The Punny To The Profound

It was a simple idea: Would you, our listeners, tweet us poems for National Poetry Month? Your response contained multitudes — haiku, lyrics, even one 8-year-old's ode to her dad's bald spot.
WAMU 88.5

Eating Insects: The Argument For Adding Bugs To Our Diet

Some say eating insects could save the planet, as we face the potential for global food and protein shortages. It's a common practice in many parts of the world, but what would it take to make bugs more appetizing to the masses here in the U.S.? Does it even make sense to try? A look at the arguments for and against the practice known as entomophagy, and the cultural and environmental issues involved.

WAMU 88.5

A Federal Official Shakes Up Metro's Board

After another smoke incident and ongoing single tracking delays for fixes, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx announced a shake-up of Metro's board.

NPR

'The Guardian' Launches New Series Examining Online Abuse

A video was released this week where female sports journalists were read abusive online comments to their face. It's an issue that reaches far beyond that group, and The Guardian is taking it on in a series called "The Web We Want." NPR's Audie Cornish speaks with series editor Becky Gardiner and writer Nesrine Malik, who receives a lot of online abuse.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.