Frosh Rep. Connolly (D) Says Dem Anti-Pelosi Ads Don’t Win ‘Any Votes’ Or ‘Any Respect’

By Jenny Schlesinger

Sep 20, 2010 3:02pm

ABC News' Amy Walters reports: Despite the fact that he’s opposing Democratic leadership on the issue of extending the Bush tax cuts, freshman Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA), told ABC’s Jon Karl and Amy Walter on “Top Line” today that he won’t be running ads criticizing them this fall. While a number of his Democratic colleagues have been airing ads distancing themselves from their party, Connolly said he’d be a vote for Nancy Pelosi as speaker in 2011.  Despite the fact that President Obama easily carried his suburban Fairfax County, Virginia district with 57 percent, this is still very much a swing district. Since it was created in 1992, a Republican has held the seat for all but four years.     Connolly: "I think what voters look for on the bottom line is authenticity. We expect you to be a Democrat. We understand that you're not always – you’re not slavishly devoted to the agenda. But when you start denouncing your own leadership and say who you are and aren't going to vote for speaker, that sort of thing — I don’t think that wins any votes and I don’t think it wins any respect from the electorate." On the issue of tax cuts, Connolly, who supports a temporary extension of all the Bush tax cuts, including the ones for those making over $250,000, said that “there really is a risk of doing harm if you let any of the tax cuts to expire.”  However, he also said that it’s “unlikely” that there will be a vote on the issue before the November elections. Moreover, Connolly notes that there aren’t enough Democratic votes in Congress to pass the plan favored by Democratic leadership and President Obama to extend tax cuts to all but those in the upper-income bracket. Connolly: “But if you had an up and down vote on my position — let's have an extension on all of them  until we can see the economy right itself — there would be, in my view, at least 40 Democrats in the House and probably at least 8 in the Senate who would vote that way.”

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