Pelosi and the Tea Party ‘Share Views’

By Jacqueline Klingebiel

Feb 28, 2010 8:15am

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she has much in common with the Tea Party.   The speaker now says she shares views with movement she dismissed last summer as being “Astroturf” –  her suggestion that the grassroots of the Tea Party were a creation of the Republican Party. 

In a “This Week” interview with ABC’s Elizabeth Vargas, Pelosi said, “We share some of the views of the Tea Partiers in terms of the role of special interest in Washington, D.C., as — it just has to stop.  And that's why I've fought the special interest, whether it's on energy, whether it's on health insurance, whether it's on pharmaceuticals and the rest.”

Pelosi held to her skepticism about what is behind the movement.  “Some of it is orchestrated from the Republican headquarters,” Pelosi said.  She also added that, “Some of it is hijacking the good intentions of lots of people who share some of our concerns that we have about the role of special interests.”

Watch video HERE:

Read full exchange HERE:

VARGAS: Let's talk a bit about the coming elections in November.  You had recently– and the Tea Party movement, do you think it will be a force to be reckoned with?  You had said last summer that it was a faux grassroots movement.  You called it the Astroturf movement.

PELOSI: In some respects it is. Uh-huh.

VARGAS: Is the Tea Party movement a force?

PELOSI: No – No what I said at the time is, that they were — the Republican Party directs a lot of what the Tea Party does, but not everybody in the Tea Party takes direction from the Republican Party.  And so there was a lot of, shall we say, Astroturf, as opposed to grassroots.

But, you know, we share some of the views of the Tea Partiers in terms of the role of special interest in Washington, D.C., as — it just has to stop.  And that's why I've fought the special interest, whether it's on energy, whether it's on health insurance, whether it's on pharmaceuticals and the rest.

VARGAS: So, common ground with many people in the Tea Party movement.

PELOSI: Well, no, there are some.  There are some because they, again, some of it is orchestrated from the Republican headquarters.  Some of it is hijacking the good intentions of lots of people who share some of our concerns that we have about the role of special interests and many Tea Partiers, not that I speak for them, share the view, whether it's — and Democrats, Republicans and Independents share the view that the recent Supreme Court decision, which greatly empowers the special interests, is something that they oppose.

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