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Nancy Pelosi Blasts Luke Russert for 'Offensive' Question About Stepping Aside Because She's Old: VIDEO


A question from NBC correspondent Luke Russert was met with boos and cries of  "age discrimination!" at Nancy Pelosi's press conference this morning announcing her decision to stay on as Minority Leader.

Asked Russert:

"Colleagues privately say that your decision to stay on prohibits the party from having a younger leadership and hurts the party in the long term. What's your response?"

Snapped Pelosi: "You've always asked that question, but not to Mitch McConnell."


She added:

The fact is that everything that I have done in my almost decade now of leadership is to elect younger and newer people to the Congress. In my own personal experience it was very important for me to elect young women. I came to Congress when my youngest child Alexandra was a senior in high school and practically on her way to college. I knew that my male colleagues had come when they were 30. They had a jump on me because they didn't have to, children to stay home. Now, I did what I wanted to do, I was blessed to have that opportunity to sequentially raise my family and then come to Congress. But I wanted women to be here in greater numbers at an earlier age so that their seniority would start to account much sooner. And it wasn't confined to women, though. [...]

You've got to take off of that 14 years for me because I was home raising a family, getting the best experience of all in diplomacy, interpersonal skills. No, the answer is no.


Russert defended himself on Twitter: "While Pelosi laughed off my Q as age-ist, many House Ds will privately gripe it hurts caucus that all 3 leaders are 70+....The longer the top 3 stay, the longer it takes to infuse the caucus with new blood like #GOP did w Cantor, Ryan, McCarthy etc."

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  1. I can't figure out how whomever wrote this translates Pelosi's response into "Pelosi snapped". She responded to the offensive question in a very appropriate way.

    Posted by: JP Colter | Nov 14, 2012 12:28:01 PM

  2. Perfectly reasonable question - why not inject some new leadership into your party? Why do politicians keep running for office into their 70s and 80s? Retire! Lord knows you assholes have given yourself golden parachute pensions and health care that the rest of us can't ever hope to attain.

    Posted by: CCGuy000 | Nov 14, 2012 12:29:05 PM

  3. "The longer the top 3 stay, the longer it takes to infuse the caucus with new blood like #GOP did w Cantor, Ryan, McCarthy etc."

    Yeah, 'cause that is working out so well for them.

    Posted by: Trasker | Nov 14, 2012 12:29:40 PM

  4. Well, those old people need to die off so we can get gay marriage, marijuana legalization, 'path to citizenship' for illegal immigrants, and so-on passed into law. She is 65 and older after all. For the good of the country and younger folks, she needs to just go away somewhere and die with the rest of the old farts.

    *sarcasm off*

    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 14, 2012 12:29:52 PM

  5. I agree we need some cut off point for these politicians. Though this doesn't necessarily mean a younger person will do a better, or even as good as job.

    She and her ilk in all parties have their plush golden parachutes, while the peasants fight over scaled back medicaid, medicare, social security, etc., I feel like we're living in Animal Farm, and the pigs are standing upright and fraternizing with the humans while selling their lesser animals down the river.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 14, 2012 12:35:18 PM

  6. It is not Mr. Russert's job to be the younger Representatives' spokesmodel. If they have a beef they would like to make public they should have the balls to do so.

    The reason they don't is Ms Pelosi raises more money than anyone else for their own campaigns and fear to go on the record.

    Posted by: Gus | Nov 14, 2012 12:35:36 PM

  7. Go, Nancy! Name me someone in the Senate - young or old - who could have answered that question with such skill and wit?

    Posted by: jj | Nov 14, 2012 12:36:38 PM

  8. I hope she sticks around until she is 100! 70 is the new 50 :) Especially when you are frozen in time by Botox. Just kidding Nancy, love you!

    Posted by: Scott | Nov 14, 2012 12:37:47 PM

  9. Luke Russert's meteoric rise at NBC news at such a young age is owing ONLY to the feelings spurred at the network by the sudden and unexpected death of his beloved father at a relatively young age and at the height of his career. The younger Mr. Russert is the beneficiary, not of nepotism, but what I call necrotism. Put another way, he's lucky that fate saw to it that his father didn't stay on and prohibit younger leadership at NBC news.

    Posted by: Bill | Nov 14, 2012 12:39:59 PM

  10. Age discrimination? No, it's gender discrimination. Nobody ever told a male politician that he was too old, even when they were known to be senile (Ronald Reagan, Jim Bunning, etc.).

    Posted by: BABH | Nov 14, 2012 12:41:43 PM

  11. Luke Russert has little qualification to ask questions of elected officials, other than the goodwill that comes from trying to take your father's job, after his untimely death. Stop riding coattails, start with journalism where you'll learn not to ask stupid, inappropriate, and/or poorly worded questions. Once you've learned reporting and journalism, maybe you can move to "big leagues".

    Posted by: MarkRocks | Nov 14, 2012 12:45:20 PM

  12. The idea that someone should step aside because of their age is extremely offensive. If they are capable, then they should stay on - and Nancy Pelosi is very capable. In addition, her comment about Russert not asking Mitch McConnell the same question is right on target. I really think this is more about a hidden agenda to weaken democratic leadership. Pelosi of course isn't perfect, no one is... but she is a champion of the liberal caucus. The GOP would like nothing more to get rid of her. Russert would never dare say anything about the GOP leadership because the press is afraid of being labeled as "biased" by Fox & Friends, so they continually bash the democrats.

    Posted by: MikeH | Nov 14, 2012 12:47:52 PM

  13. Russert is the worst report/anchor in a long time. We all know how he got his job. One of the worst cases of nepotism and white man privledge/affirmative action ever

    Posted by: Bellah | Nov 14, 2012 12:47:57 PM

  14. I liked the waving of the hand

    Posted by: Mikemike | Nov 14, 2012 12:50:51 PM

  15. My question wouldn't have been about age as much as about "different leadership". I don't like people staying on for 10 years or more in the same leadership position. Change is good. The longer one person is the face of the Party, the more people identify party and politics with *that* person, instead of the positions of the Party.

    Posted by: Dastius Krazitauc | Nov 14, 2012 12:58:16 PM

  16. She got the job because she raises the most cash. This has nothing to do with age or ideas.

    Posted by: anon | Nov 14, 2012 1:01:47 PM

  17. Glad Pelosi is staying, she should be the next speaker of the house.

    Posted by: anony6 | Nov 14, 2012 1:03:10 PM

  18. Ronald Reagan was 73 at the start of his second term! So, yeah, maybe it's time to step aside.

    Posted by: Craig | Nov 14, 2012 1:07:04 PM

  19. The GOP infused younger blood but with that younger blood came archaic ideology out of touch with many Americans. So let's actually look at this, the younger blood the GOP brought in has held the party back and help in their defeat last Tuesday.

    Posted by: Vito | Nov 14, 2012 1:09:57 PM

  20. Bill - love the necrotism comment, it's dead on ...

    Posted by: antb | Nov 14, 2012 1:12:29 PM

  21. Am I the only person who finds it annoying that, because his late father was a great journalist and died suddenly, Luke Russert was handed a role that he has really done little to earn?

    Posted by: Sam | Nov 14, 2012 1:12:40 PM

  22. Russert is young and naive sometimes. I think he has the potential to grow into a fine reporter. This incident is part of his education.

    Posted by: Gast | Nov 14, 2012 1:14:23 PM

  23. Luke Russert is horrible. He clearly seems to think he's a young hotshot who got where he is based on his ability, which we all know couldn't be farther from the truth.

    As far as the idea about age goes, Bernie Sanders has been the most outspoken advocate for Americans who are struggling. He seems to be the only one who gets it. Paul Ryan is young, but his economic "policies" (fantasies?) would have been an unmitigated disaster.

    Posted by: Steve | Nov 14, 2012 1:18:19 PM

  24. Luke will not want to see his Mother at Thanksgiving dinner. I am guessing she will have a thing or two to say about his comments that reflect his age and gender discrimination. She is a successful journalist that I am certain has had to battle her fair share of discrimination. Should make for an interesting holiday meal. Grow up Luke.

    Posted by: justsayin60 | Nov 14, 2012 1:36:58 PM

  25. "...the longer it takes to infuse the caucus with new blood like #GOP did w Cantor, Ryan, McCarthy etc."

    Yeah, good example; dumbasses one and all. Keep Pelosi.

    Posted by: woodroad34 | Nov 14, 2012 1:38:23 PM

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