On the show AM Joy this week, Nancy Pelosi misquoted the leader of the Senate Mitch McConnell and called him a “racist.” Pelosi was asked about her conversations with GOP leaders in the House and Senate about “white supremacy and racism.”
The MSNBC host asked, “I’m going to ask you the same question that I asked my previous panel in terms of we focus on President Trump and his culpability in worsening race relations but you’ve been on Capitol Hill for a long time. You’ve worked with Speaker Ryan you know Mitch McConnell, why haven’t they spoken up as leaders in the United States against something as pernicious as white supremacy and racism.”
Pelosi answered by misquoting Leader McConnell and calling him racist.
“Let me remind you that when the Republicans took power when President Obama was president of the United States, what Mitch McConnell said is ‘The most important thing we can do is to make sure he does not succeed.’ If that wasn’t a racist statement. That is unthinkable.”
Pelosi continued, saying “We worked with President Bush although we had our differences. You don’t make a statement to make sure the president doesn’t succeed. Why did he say that? Why did he say that?”
The major issue is that McConnell said nothing of the sort. The Washington Post gave the claim “Four Pinocchios” and included the full context of McConnell’s comments from a National Journal interview in 2010:
McConnell: We need to be honest with the public. This election is about them, not us. And we need to treat this election as the first step in retaking the government. We need to say to everyone on Election Day, “Those of you who helped make this a good day, you need to go out and help us finish the job.”
NJ.: What’s the job?
McConnell: The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.
NJ: Does that mean endless, or at least frequent, confrontation with the president?
McConnell: If President Obama does a Clintonian backflip, if he’s willing to meet us halfway on some of the biggest issues, it’s not inappropriate for us to do business with him.
NJ: What are the big issues?
McConnell: It is possible the president’s advisers will tell him he has to do something to get right with the public on his levels of spending and [on] lowering the national debt. If he were to heed that advice, he would, I imagine, find more support among our conference than he would among some in the Senate in his own party. I don’t want the president to fail; I want him to change. So, we’ll see. The next move is going to be up to him.