tv Susan Page Madam Speaker CSPAN June 3, 2022 10:35am-11:30am EDT
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>> my name is jennifer palmieri and i'm very excited to welcome my friend susan page to annapolis, proud edgewater -- [applause] i am p a proud edgewater reside. susan and i've known each other for a long time because she's covered a lot of people i work for. i was hillary clinton's communications director. barack obama's communications director, worked foror president clinton. [applause] >> johnrd edwards. >> john edwards presidential campaign, and in some ways i think nancy pelosi would say the same thing. you kind of grow and think about and learn from the losses and a tough situation like the edwards family more than other situations. a
little easy and susan so susan and i have first met her where you know, if she was usa today when i work for president clinton and very happy to i'm not sarah alfred states that are help with supposed to do this. they're in session. so sarah asked me if i would moderate that i was like susan page. i'm talking about nancy pelosi. this is definitely my wheelhouse i i wrote a book called dear madam president sort of based off of the experiences. i worked learning learned working for hillary and second book. she proclaims our declaration of independence from a man's world. it's not a declaration of war. just don't see any reason we need to continue to follow a man's path and that is what just something about her is about right that you hear the set about women. there's just something about her. i don't like sometimes it's there's just something about her. that's incredible. and for nancy pelosi, there's i've just something about her that is incredible and
incredibly effective um and susan i talked about this and thought that for our discussion of madam speaker to start with the question of what makes her so effective. she's incredibly effective and even john boehner her, you know foe house republican speaker john bainer said she was probably the most effective speaker ever, right? so i thought we would look start do that sort of three categories and then we'll do q&a with the audience one is role models and early role models and people who helped her along the way i went to kentucky brown jackson's ceremony yesterday at the white house, and it was remarkable. i don't know if you didn't watch the whole thing. you didn't see this. her entire speech except for the very end. that was very moving where she quoted my angelo was her thanking people. it was her thanking people who had helped her from the time. she was a child her family
mentors jurists the white house team naming everyone and you know, it's not something you would normally see a leader. a jurist jurisdo, so we'll do role models or people who helped her along the way her early experiences and motherhood which seemed to be really important to developing those the leader and then how she manages criticism and along the way because i worked for hillary and you know wrote about those experiences. well, we'll mix hillary into so talk about susan talk about the role models really her her start with her parents which were so important. well jen, i'm so i'm so glad to be here. thank you all for coming on this lovely saturday morning. day you know after two years of this pandemic, it's such a relief to see people in person. so i'm really glad to be here at a celebration of people who love books and and we're talking about my book today, but the paperback edition of jen's
latest book is also just out in going to be by the way available for sale and autograph after women's supporting women friends. that's all about you know nancy pelosi. i mean really what i what? person comfortable with power, you know, i went through a couple different titles for my book, which is now nancy pelosi and the lessons of power but the first title when i began writing the book was nancy pelosi in the arc of power and people thought that was too much like the art of power which is a thomas jefferson anyway, or the art of the deal. yeah, so we stopped with art and then we met made it nancy pelosi and the test of power which i thought was all right, but we ended up with nancy pelosi in the lessons of power because the thing about nancy pelosi is she learned lessons about power from the day. she was born the day she was born newspaper photographer
showed up at her mother's bedside in the hospital to take pictures which then appeared on the front page of some of the baltimore of the multiple baltimore papers. and because her dad was a member of congress prominent family. they had the family had had five boys in a row and finally had a girl so that seemed pretty notable. so nancy pelosi has been in the news columns since her birth. she was the person when her father then one the first of three terms to be mayor baltimore. she was the one who held the bible at on the stand for his swearing in so this is someone who grew up with a lot of role models for power one is her remarkable father tommy the elder dalessandro. you are all too young to know him, but some of you might have known his son who was the one-term mayor of baltimore tommy the younger dalessandro who died just about months ago,
but the other remarkable role model for nancy pelosi was her mother and her mother was known as big nancy. which was a very apt nickname and it also meant that nancy the woman who the girl who became nancy pelosi was always known as little nancy. and i think she did not shed that nickname until she went away to college. maybe that's why she went away to college to not be known to everyone as little nancy big nancy dalessandro. was this remarkably smart innovative entrepreneurial woman well ahead of her time pelosi told me in one of the interviews i did with her for the book that if her mother were born today, she would be president and her mother. her mother wanted to go to law school. she tried to go to law school after having nancy pelosi. so she at that point she had, you know six kids at home. that did not work out.
she she patent she made she made invented things that that blew me away that there was like a there's an actual patent. she got patents for her inventions including a device to use to give you a beautiful complexion, which is this metal device with a hole in the top and an electric coil inside and according to the ads that they ran at the time you pour the secret oil. into the battle tube and you plug it in and you put your face over it to get it steamed and it will give you a beautiful complexion and i do not know if it would in fact give you a beautiful complexion, but i do know that when i was doing the book one of my kids found one on ebay and nancy delasandro's beauty by vapor machine and bought it for 34 dollars. i don't know if the seller understood the historic meaning of this device and i plugged it in and it still heat it up water. i did not have the secret oil
available. the other thing that i think isn't instructive to know about big nancy is that she was a huge risk-taker. she was not hesitant about taking big risks, and and she loved playing the ponies. she had her own opportunities to do that in maryland. yes. she was she had a special affection for pimlico where she spent quite a bit of time and when her husband was mayor he would go to sabatinis sabatinos restaurant in little italy to pay the bookies in the back of the room the debts that his wife had incurred at pimlico. so if you want to know something about nancy pelosi's comfort with power and her comfort with risk and her willingness to attack. goals that other people say cannot be reached just look at big nancy dalessandro. and do you think that she that little man felt the mother's
frustration that she wasn't allowed to do things or that she saw or that little nancy just saw the possibility. so when little nancy was born big nancy made a promise to god. that had made before she was born that if only she could have a girl after all these boys. she would make the girl a nun. now and big nancy did her best to make little nancy a nun and at one point little nancy said that she did not want to be a nun, but she might be interested in being a priest. that i think that big nancy gave nancy big nancy dalessandro gave nancy pelosi comfort with doing things and ignoring those who said you couldn't do it you as a
woman couldn't do it you as an italian-american couldn't do it. i think it just made her it made her fearless and she also learned. she also learned from childhood how to manage and motivate supporters. she the dalessandro family had something called the favor file. and you don't actually need a dictionary to understand. what a favor file is so they would big nancy and little nancy would sit at a table. in the front room of their home in little italy in constituents would line up. like line up out to the sidewalk to go through and see. favors they might need some help with housing, or maybe they had an immigration issue, or maybe they had a child in jail, and they wanted some help from the mayor to get him or her out of
jail and big nancy would listen to the problem to the favor that was needed write it down on a card. and figure out what they could do to help and if you got a favor granted that came with a certain expectation. that you owed them something you would vote for tommy dalessandro the next time we was running for office. maybe you would go to a rally for him or if there was some future person seeking a favor that you were in a position to help with you'd be expected to do that. and this is i think a pretty good description of what the speaker of the house does. and do you think that is how because she's just you know, she's she's effective on many levels on like deflecting criticisms being focused going straight, but just corralling. i mean the house democratic caucus my friends that thing is not easy to get your hands around do you think how does she is that? is that how she engenders that
kind of loyalty? people, you know, she says the way she learned how to be an effective speaker of the house and leader of the house democratic caucus is by having five children herself. because she says the skills you need to run the house of representatives are exactly the same as the skills. you need to manage a house with a bunch of kids. you need to be comfortable with chaos. you need to be willing to deal with shifting coalitions. you need to be able to persuade people to do what you want them to do and convince them. it was their idea. and you know, this is it's interesting and she's done nancy pelosi has done a lot to recruit women to run for office and often as and this is perhaps a little less true today, but in the past it's been especially true that should be recruiting
women who had been homemakers as opposed to having a career outside the home and often they would say, oh i couldn't i couldn't run for congress. you should find somebody else more qualified usually meaning some man could be more qualified and she would tell the story about her her own training as a mother was what it was critical for her being an effective politician and you know, she was she was 46 before she ran the first time for public office. i don't think people appreciate that. i was in california at the time. i remember when she was elected and first and she just took off like a rocket when she got to the house represented it was you know, she was 47 when she was first sworn in. no experience, but homemaker right? well listen. yes. no say a question. political fundraiser she had worked for a year in a synod office next to another junior
aid named stinney hoyer. our congressman, he's our congressman. yeah, so she hit but she had not she didn't have the traditional experience. she hadn't worked as a she didn't have a law degree. she hadn't worked in some of the traditional ways that funnel you into public office. she told me she wasn't sure she was gonna like congress and that she and her husband agreed. maybe she would serve for five terms 10 years. that was what her father had done. he had been a five-term congressman, but i think that within about an hour and a half of arriving in washington. she knew she had arrived where she ought to be this place needed to be organized it and i think about years grabbing her background compared that to you know, what hillary clinton saw as in early role models in her mom and her dad and i feel like she never saw power power was not around her when she was but was around her growing up was her mom and her mom the trauma
that her mother. yeah as a young child. she was abandoned. she had a help raise her sister. she had to like work in a home as a young age just really really mistreated and that was sort of her path and her motivation. um, and what difference do you think that makes like if you compare these are two of the most powerful women in the of the country? yeah. they both have had tremendous power. how is hillary clinton's understanding and use of power different. do you think from nancy pelosi's? i don't think it was not her. it was not her training right her background. she had a motivation to get into public service. it was about kids. she never probably never would have gotten into politics had she not been, you know had had she not met bill clinton who like put her on a, you know, broader along on a different path. and so the the power sort of came secondary. i don't think it was not
something she was it is not her milia right? her milia is policy and i think that that power is not it's not something. she was she does not i think pelosi probably me. you tell me i think i feel like approached approach me to see a plosie pelosi approaches a problem thinking about how she can correct. i mean, she's the perfect person the perfect job like how she can corral people around, you know, move them to support a certain outcome and hillary's the one that's designing with the outcome is right, so it's just and the the power came with, you know more with bigger and bigger jobs, but it's not it is not her current. yeah. yeah pelosi, you know, i've covered. seven presidents and 11
presidential campaigns. i was telling someone before the program started. i have no other skills. thank god we keep holding elections. so i have something to do but nancy pelosi is more comfortable with accumulating and exercising and maintaining power than any politician i've ever covered. it is natural to her and i think it's because she grew up in a world. i've said this before she grew up in a household where the use of political power was like the existence of running water. it was just part of it was part of everything the family was about it was part of her mother and her father in her community and yet she never thought of herself as a candidate for office until a woman told her she ought to do it. she had done. she had been a very effective political fundraiser in california and she had in fact
chaired the state didn't democratic party and done. it was seen as doing a good job running the california democratic party, but she never no one else thought of her as a candidate and neither. did she until salib burton who was a member of congress who has succeeded her legendary husband phil burton, who was a liberal lion of the house. so her husband dies. she runs and takes the seat. she gets sick. and she calls in nancy pelosi. who was this fundraiser and said you should run and pelosi is like no. i'm not a candidate and it was salah who put this in her mind. that she should run and she told me that if saliberton hadn't done that she'd never would have run for office. and that's the story of so many women in politics and it's true for hillary too. she never saw herself as a candidate until you know through her husband's political career
it became it became it became something there. you know, there's another way they're alike. and hillary clinton and nancy pelosi in that they are hugely demonized. oh, yes. i've literally written two books about so, why are these two women demonized? um, so i mean honestly, this is just something about her that i think that what i because when i joined the clinton campaign, you know you i had been through a lot already. i had been through the clinton presidency the edwards campaigns the barack obama's communication director. i was like i can handle this i can handle hillary clinton and it was if i was just it was if i had been a bus driver all my life and all of a sudden when i got in the bus and i turned the wheel this way the bus went that way and i put on the brakes and the accelerator would go and it's like all of the instruments that i normally use that i knew how to use just went haywire and it sounds stupid now, but i had
not appreciated how important role models are and the fact that we had never seen a woman in this, you know in it, you know as the actual nominee we'd never seen a woman in the oval office we had an idea and you know, i had an epiphany late very late in the campaign like in october of 16. and i thought oh what we have been doing is trying to like jam her into a male. role right into like very ill-fitting suit for her show her show you she can do the job as it has always been done. which has how is how a man has always done it and i thought what a disservice no wonder people think she's inauthentic. um, and i had no idea about what to do about it all these and and it was you know, and it was too late because we you know, we we just don't know what that looks like, and i think that and it's not as if everyone who didn't like her or didn't vote for her is sexist or you know, i think
we're all certain. we're not sexist. we're all certain. we're not racist. therefore. we're pretty blind to the biases that we all have and so the way we reveal itself is like it's sort of you don't recognize her. there's something kind of vaccine confounding about i don't know. there's just something about her. i don't like there's just something about it. i don't trust. and we would ask the questions like well, what is well, i don't know. she's always so sketchy. she's always hiding something like what's that about? well, why what are we gonna white water ended up to be i mean, we'll go into it but edited to be like a total nothing and but it just it just like suspicion just builds unsuspicion and and i think that with pelosi what has been remarkable to to me about pelosi is she just shuts it down. she just doesn't she just she gives you. no sign that it bothers her she just boom. she just keeps going it's remarkable, and i just she seems to appreciate understand that it
is not about her. well, i actually always that way in politics or just have to work. so i'm not i think she doesn't show when she's really mad, but i would just make the point hillary was running for president nancy pelosi is running for the head of the democratic caucus. it's a smaller constituency, right? she doesn't need to make she doesn't need to be an effective order and she's not she doesn't need to connect with thousands and millions of people. it's a different. it's a different kind of role, but what part of the think about how nancy pelosi keeps her position. it's because if you cross her you in your member of congress, you will pay a price and and rules she rules with a favor file. you can members of congress want favors from her. they want a committee assignment. they want to go on a particular foreign trip. they want legislation to get a
hearing or to be passed, right? but there if you if you if you behave in a way that she thinks was not appropriate or that created her with a lot of problems. you're not going to get off. scott free. i'll tell you that. she's the in the so i did 10 interviews with her for the book, which i am very appreciative of because the speaker of the house has other things to do that. i was a professional. yeah, you ten interviews and that it yeah that's like that. is that gives you a remarkable insight? so i saves the this real stuff. i know she wouldn't like for the 9th interview because because i didn't want to like start out with the stuff that she wasn't gonna like and in the night interview. i was asking questions about the things i knew that she would like the least the things that you know, she would might see us the most negative or and there was one particular thing.
i was asking about that was really. she that she thought did not deserve to be in the book and wasn't important and it relevant and we engaged in this conversation in which i became increasingly terrified. so we're sitting there. she's not she know she's shorter than i am. she's not taller than i am. she didn't raise her voice. she didn't yell at me. she didn't curse, but she somehow got bigger. i'm sitting in this chair and pelosi is just getting bigger and bigger and and more and more, you know, alarming to me and she kept insisting. she asked increasingly probing questions. she forced me to defend myself to defend my point of view to articulate in a very full way. what my why i thought this was an episode that deserved to be in her biography and at the end of this interview. which was not my favorite
interview of the stuff the chin. she continued to think it shouldn't be in and i continued to say it should be in and that's how the interview ended and i went out. i went out it was about it was about three o'clock in the afternoon. i left the speakers office, which is this fantastic office with this magnificent vie i went to my car, i drove home. i poured a glass of wine. i crawled into bed and i watched about three hours worth of rizzoli and isles reruns. you can imagine what a member of congress must feel like when pelosi is trying to get you to vote for the affordable care act and you don't want to . that gave me just a little sense of that
>> i had during obama, the leadership would come in a lot and after i think it was probably 13 paul life with the speaker and mcconnell, read, pelosi, i can't remember. they were at an impasse and the republican speakers had had a hard time getting any of their caucus to agree on anything. and i talked to her, she was coming on and i say do you look at those guys and think you guys are a bunch of jokers. [applause] and you know, she's so guarded. that was the one time i agood giggle . she just looks at me and she says right, mcconnell, sure. it's like igwhy?
>> senators of either party she has a lot of contempt for because the senate has its own rules. you can't roll as easily as you can in the house and the senate has been the place where the house passed legislation goes to die. >> it's interesting some of the people that you interviewed. i'm particularly interested in what weiner says, hillary says and some of the other leadersthat have worked with her . >> they did say when i interviewed him for the book that he thought she was the most effective speaker in american history and actually newt gingrich who is no friend of nancy pelosi's and vice versa also said that when he looks at pelosi he sees a fellow pirates. which i think gingrich sees this as high praise. but they weiner also said,
and this is a point of criticism for some of pelosi. he said there were times when you would try to moderate the rhetoric. he would try to leave the door open for more cooperation and she was always full steam ahead and was in his view taking very partisan views on things and that is also something that top aides to president george w. bush told me. that remember when loc was first elected speaker, first woman in the history of our country and george w. bush went up to deliver a state of the union address and he made comments acknowledging they history, mentioning her father and according to his top aide, bush felt bad pelosi never reciprocated but he was making an offer, trying to act in a cooler
manner than the politics are heading today and that was not something she was with's i thought of and i read that passage and i thought of if she thinks if i were relinquish any notion of this being entirely partisan out lose power she would say boehner didn't deliver. boehner didn't deliver his caucus. if you can't deliver your people, she thinks the most damaging legislation she pushed through was notthe affordable care act . it was tarp, that bank bailout in 2008 we have the financial meltdown and nobody liked bailing out banks. in american can politics
bailing out banks is not the most popular thing to do but economists are saying if you don't do this we're going to head into a depression so they made a deal, pelosi and boehner made a deal they would deliver 50 percent of their caucus for this unpopular legislation n and she delivered 50 percent and a bit more and he did not and i don't know if you remember after the house vote, the stock market just plunged in a way that was serious and at that point they brought the legislation back up. pelosi delivered all the votes they needed. boehner again did not deliver 50 percent of his caucus because e he couldn't because that caucus was not under controln,her view would be you want to play with me you got to deliver . >> i had sort of forgotten. i think about her as so effective from apa and obama and during the trump years. and then in the blighted administration but i have
fought forgotten the magic where you're like wow , she had the votes. this is like a mantra, nancy has votes. nancy never goes to the floor if she doesn't have the votes it started where she rescued the rescue passage. >> she rescued george w. bush and she told me was the president who made the worst mistake in american history which is the iraq war. she did not have a high view of george w. bush and his presidency and even though it cost her members to push through this legislation she did it because the alternative just looked too grim. >> tell us about, she took on a particular iconic status during the trump years. walking out in the orange coat with the big collar of the white house for the cameras. do you think that she had trump's number because she'd
encountered him and seeing him in baltimore, she'd seen him in san francisco politics,encountered people like him before ? >> donald trump is a very distinctive figure . i'm not sure i know a lot of people like donald trump. >> i grew up in new jersey. everybody knows a trump, you know people like him, you know bullies like him and you got to punch themin the face . >> i grew up in kansas. [laughter] but she had his number. >>. [inaudible] she knew how to deal with aggressive men and bullies. she'd grown up with five older brothers, how do you think she managed to handle herself? that was also probably good training. she had a view of trump that was extremely negative from the get-go. in fact she told me that her plan had been to resign after
the 2016 election. she was ready to leave congress esso she had been reelected but somebody else was going to be elected democratic leader, she would resign and they have a special legislation and she felt comfortable doing this because she knew things would be in good hands with hillary clinton and then election nights 2016 , she starts the night believing that as many of us did that hillary clinton was going to win the election and looked at early returns from pennsylvania and talked to bob brady who is like an old-time paul from pennsylvania, been a member of the house much like her dad gave her some numbers from outside the philadelphia area that indicated it was a problem and at that point she knew hillary was going to
lose. she was at a big event for big donors. she stopped reassuring people o that things were going to be okay. she didn't tell them what she thought was going to happen and by the end of the night she decided not to retire because she thought trump was a threat to the nation, not a threat to the democrats, a threat to the nation and she felt an amobligation to stick faaround and she became the face of the democratic opposition. to president trump and i'm not sure. i think it took him a long time to understand that. i've interviewed him on air force 2, i need on air force one for usa today a couple weeks before the midterms in 2016. i mean, in 2018 and i said are you concerned that democrats may win control of the house? and his aide steve batted in particular were concerned about that because they
thought that would lead to this unending investigation of the trump administration id and president trump said that he was not concerned particularly about that because he knew pelosi. he got along with pelosi. pelosi wanted to do business, that's true. he thought they hadn't been able to pass an infrastructure package and he thought that they would have a better chance of passing an infrastructure built with pelosi as speaker and i republicans in control. >> that turned out to be true. much later, different president. >> i think because she wasn't on the impeachment training heshe thought he was going to protect them and she was very reluctant to do impeachment but she was no friend of donald trump. and she was for two years in the minority incredibly effective at playing a very weak hand against trump and when she got the majority she was very effective in playing amuch stronger hand against donald trump .
>> we willtake questions from theaudience . we have a microphone in the middle . let's come up and start doing that. >> my niece brought her here. i just want to be totally transparent .. >> can you hear me okay? i wondered what your next project is going to be. >> thank you for asking. i'm working on a book or simon and schuster. it's another biography of a powerful and interesting woman. it's a biography of barbara walters. >> interesting. >> you buy that book, right? >> we do, yes. >> in fact i take texted him this morning and said we were going to be together. we love our agent o. >> it's weird, people don't often do that. >> but we do. barbarawalters, that's excellent . >> three characteristics of the three women i've done
biographies off, the two i've done and what i'm working on. complicated. barbara bush, yes. i did a biography of barbara bush called the matriarch. barbara bush, nancy pelosi and now barbara walters. one, they are complicated. 2, they are consequential. they had an impact and three, no good biography ofthem . >> there's quite a good deal onthat . >> that item that you were talking about about speaker pelosi ... [inaudible] was that item in your book? >> it was. >> and what was that? >> i'm not going to poke the bear by telling what it was but this makes me look smart. when i was starting both
books, i didn't contact the subject of the book beforehand to see if they would cooperate which potentially could be very stupid . both of them icooperated. i did interviews with barbara bush in the last six months of her life and the 10 interviews with pelosi for this book and then an 11 interview for the hardback, for the paperback which just came out a couple weeks ago. but the reason i didn't ask them if they would cooperate is because i thought if they said no, i might chicken out. and i thought if they saidyes , they might think they had some control over what i wrote but if i came to them and said i have signed a contract to do a biography and i would appreciate you talking to me, it's clear that i'm writing a work of
journalism and not an authorized biography cause in an authorized biography she would have been able to make a call about what i could include and not include that was true with the barbara bush book as well. there was something in the biography the family was very opposed to. the family was supposed tobut it's in there because it seemed important to me . >> can you talk a little bit about how pelosi dealt with the challenge ... [inaudible] do they have any kind of ... >> they do have power. they may have more. if democrats lose control of the house in november which i think is now very ellikely. nothing's guaranteed but very likely. once left are going to be the most progressive members of the democratic caucus so they will have more power.
pelosi told me that she saw some of herself in aoc, especially when she was younger when she was standing up for liberal positions and couldn't understand why politicians would settle for half a loaf when they got to get a full load but as in the position she was in now review and hurt you always had been pragmatic. get the most liberal thing you can get. don't give awaythe most liberal thing you can get in for some of the most liberal thing you cannot get . that would be her attitude and the best interview i did, these would have to be set up well in advance because the house is a busy schedule. so one of the interviews i had with her was right after a meeting of the democratic caucus and it just turned into a brawl between her and the squad because they had defected on an immigration vote that she had wanted them to vote with the democrats on. and so she was all warmed up
by the time she got to the interview with me and i was asking her about it and she got annoyed and said i thought this was an interview about the book and i said let me ask you one thing about this then. using the squad understands the process of passing legislation? which turned out to be a very good question as it turned out. she said no and she said and this she's putting a famous line that dave bonior, a former member of congress is. she said some people come to washington to pose for holy pictures. and say look how pure i am. and some of us come to washington to get things ndone. and i can tell you having nancy pelosi say you are posing for holy pictures is
not a compliment . >> good morning, thank you for being here. this builds on the last question. i'm wondering what the speaker thinks about her legacy in terms of the shifting ideals of the american public in terms of antiracism and evil as him and the things that we are very concerned with in terms of social justice lens. how does she see her legacy and that these? >> that's a great mquestion. i'm not sure ihave a good answer for it . in some ways, the big cultural trends in our country are things she's fought for for 50 years. when she came to, when she was first elected the biggest issue she initially had to deal with was hiv-aids
because most politicians wouldn't even say the word aids. and she was coming from representing a district that was the epicenter of the epidemic of aids. and yet look at our attitudes now on not just on aids but same-sex marriage. and on racial justice. some of these trends just from the last couple of years so i'm sure she sees those eein a, i'm sure she sees those with gratitude and pride but it's not something i talkedto her about maybe i shouldn't presume . if you ask her what is your biggest legacy i think she would probably say the affordable care act. >> i think so, yes. >> as a quick follow-up what do you think her position is in terms ofexpanding the courts ? the supreme court. >> she's been asked that
question which she dismisses and refuses to answer because she sees it as something that's not going tohappen so why waste time on .>> thank you. >> thank you for coming. how would you explain or frame nancy pelosi relationship with her base? clearly her family were very active roman catholics. she's said publicly when asked if she hadn't trump that she hated nobody. she was catholic and she prayed for him. how does that influence what her priorities are and how she faces every day and the choices she makes?he >> she is a person of faith. she regularly attends mass. her faith is very important to her. she prays every day, she says
and i believe her when she hsaid that. and i think her whole, one of the things she tells aspiring politicians is you need to know why you ran for office and for herself it is for children. for children in need, to protect children there's a big social justice thread through pelosi's i think life and through her political priorities that were shipped first by the all-girls catholic school she went to . in baltimore and then by trinity college. until she went, her entire schooling oowas at catholic institutions fought by nuns with only girls in her class. you know, that's another similarity between hillary and pelosi. they went to all-girlsschools in college . >> only brothers, i just read
valerie biden's sister. it's interesting, val is a really strong woman. she only had robrothers. >> and val, she's very tough. and hillary was the only girl. i think that when you're the only girl you like a little tougher maybe. you absorb different lessons. and then she went to an all women's college.da my daughter went all women's college to and found it interestingly that it would not give them confidence when you were in the world with men that it does seem to instill just sort of a foundation of confidence. >> i've been struck by how many women's leaders went to
all women's colleges of which there are not that many left. >> it does seem to instill a foundation of confidence. >> we have three minutes left . >> i'm wondering about the men who helped her along the way.because this is, i worked for leon and anna who was my congressman at the time. i grew up in a navy family and we were in leon panetta cystic in monterey. so i thought california's men in the california delegation, towards miller, chuck schumer and not in the california designation. there was john murtha, a cabal of men, that sounds weird. know what i mean. i was like this nancy pelosi is on the appropriations committee, she's chair of the california delegation.
people that helped her but i never clear and that's interesting and also did she have an admission to the speaker when she got there or was it just like i also can't imagine no one else can do this jobso i'm doing it . >> i think she looked at one of the democratic leadership was doing andthought they were doing very well . i don't think she came to washington thinking i want to climb this latter. she looked at it and said boy are these people in a period and i don't think it was gender driven . i don't think it was like, women need this. i think it was like i'm a democrat, we can do better than this and when it was actually pretty early on there were rumors she might challenge the speaker who lost his race. ifully which she was not considering. it would have been following for her to challenge him at that point. and they came to her and she
dismissed it and they said we know that you women members of congress have concerns. no need for you to run for the leadership. let us know what they areand we will take care of them . you can imagine how well received that message was . >> i have a concern that you're not doing it well so i will run. >> the number one lesson of power if you're talking about the lessons of power, nancy pelosi's number one lesson of power is one she learned from her father which is no one will give you power, you have to take it . and that is what she did. in running for the leadership , steny hoyer was in line to be the next with and she ran a three-year campaign to defeat him to get onto that steppingstone that led eventually to the speakership
. when people come to her aspiring politicians with tough races and they want this or they want that she says nobody's going to hand you power. you have to seize it. that has been a mantra of her life and it has served this leader pretty well. one thing justa closing comment about pelosi , when i started the book the pitch i made to my publisher was at here is the most powerful woman in american history. the first female speaker of the house and when i finished the book i thought she's in history books as the first female speaker of the house but she's also in history books as one of the most effective speakers in the history of the united states of america and that is pretty remarkable. it's been my anprivilege to spend some timestudying her . >> thanks everyone.
great crowd. [applause] >> tv features authors discussing their latest books . on in-depth join our last conversation with a journalist who will discuss immigration issues, america's drug epidemic and his latest book the least of us: true tales of america in the time of fentanyl and meth at 10 eastern on "after words", creator and host of the rubin report dave rubin shares his thoughts on how to revive the american dream and call out woke culture withhis book don't burn this country . he's interviewed by director of fully emily deakins. watch book tv every sunday and find a full schedule on your program guide or watch online anytime at book tv.org.
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