During a press conference announcing her decision to remain as House Minority Leader, Nancy Pelosi took offense at NBC’s Luke Russert when he questioned whether her age and that of the rest of the Democratic leadership “hurts the [Democratic] Party.”
Russert: Some of your 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?
Pelosi: Next! Oh, you’ve always asked that question, except to Mitch McConnell,
Russert: No, excuse me. You, Mr. Hoyer, Mr. Clyburn, you’re all over 70. Is your decision to stay on prohibiting younger members for moving forward?
Pelosi: So you’re suggesting that everybody step aside? Let’s for a moment honor it as a legitimate question, although it’s quite offensive. You don’t realize that, I guess.
Pelosi then went on to talk about how she has worked hard to elect younger, newer people, especially women, into Congress, so that their seniority would start much sooner.
Russert wasn’t trying to be offensive to the Democratic leadership. After all, he works for NBC. He was just pointing out the fact that the Democratic leadership is old, with an average age of 72, compared to the Republicans whose leadership is just 53 years old on average.
The Democrats are holding on to their aging leadership team. It is the same team—with the exception of Clyburn—that oversaw the historic Republican sweep in 2010, and fell far short of regaining enough seats this month to end their minority status for at least another two years.
Pelosi claimed that the question was offensive, but only because she is in denial that her time has come and gone. As long as she remains in power, the Democrats will have a very difficult time regaining control of Congress.
Long live Nancy!