Headliners MSNBC June 16, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT
nancy pelosi. we talk to the highest ranking elected woman in american history. at 10:00 p.m., a special hour on the stonewall riots. but for now, from us at kasie d.c., good night from washington. under the dome of this temple of democracy, we renew the great american experiment. >> she's the most powerful woman in the history of american politics. >> not just the first woman to be speaker of the house, the first woman to lead a political party in congress. >> she's like a nuclear sub. you don't hear it. you don't see it. but it's moving. >> the face of both the democratic party and its resistance to president donald trump. >> this administration just is in a downward spiral of
indecency. >> for years she's been a villain to the right. >> i think the message says it all. fire nancy pelosi. >> crazy nancy, she's lost it. >> today she's emerged as the president's most formidable rival. >> we came in here in good faith. >> it is a relationship like two boxers in a ring. >> she instinctively knows how to handle this guy. >> how did nancy pelosi hone the political skills that allowed her to become such an enduring figure? on this headliners, my one-on-one with the speaker of the house. >> is he fit to be president? ♪ ♪ >> here in the u.s. capital where nancy pelosi has gone where no woman has ever gone before, becoming speaker of the
house twice. a force of nature in washington d.c., she has never been one to back down, whether the threat is president trump or rebellious members of her own party. >> we had certain values and principals that we cannot abandon. >> so you see this as a moment of opportunity? >> i do, indeed. diversity is a strength but our unity is owe power. >> i met with nancy pelosi on may 24th just before a major showdown at the white house stalled a possible deal to improve the country's infrastructure. >> i pray for the president of the united states and i pray for the united states of america. >> we spoke about democracy. >> right there, see right there? that's where the first amendment is alive and well. >> and family. >> and most importantly, her relationship with the current
president, donald j. trump. >> is he fit to be president? >> well, the american people elected him president. not by the popular vote, but by electoral college. so i respect the office that he holds. >> okay. >> and i think i respect the office that the president holds more than he respects the office that he holds. and i do believe that we must hold him accountable. >> and it's that call for accountability that has apparently changed the dealings between the speaker and the president. from cordial. >> i give her a great deal of credit for what she's done and accomplished. >> to come pattive. >> a temper tantrum by the president. i know a temper tantrum when i see one. i first met speaker pelosi through my parents. my father, national security adviser to president jimmy carter, counseled the speaker on ways the u.s. could withdraw
from iraq. there were other encounters, too. some with far less gravity. >> i have been looking at any sort of links between my family and yours, and in 2014, i found a picture of an evunveiling of sculpture. do you have any idea why zz top was there? >> i have to think back on that one. >> me too. i couldn't figure it out. >> as for pelosi's parents, they never imagined their only daughter holding elected office. >> they wanted me to be holy. that's what would have made them proud. >> her story started in baltimore, where her father was the mayor and a congressman. as a little girl, she slept on a bed with copies of the congressional record stuffed underneath. >> that was the life we knew. and it was a life that recognized that public service was a noble calling and we all
had a responsibility to each other. >> in baltimore political circles, pelosi's father was known as big tommy to distinguish him from his son who later became mayor. her mother, also named nancy, helped run the political machine. >> my mother had seven children. she was brilliant. he was a poet. she was an inventor. she did so many things. we grew up in the place where we were devoutly catholic, deeply patriotic, very, very proud of our italian american heritage and democratic. >> people came to your front door often asking for help. what are your memories? >> i just remember that our door was always open. i kind of knew what to say to people. the phone rang or somebody knocked on the door, and they wanted a job or whatever it was, where to send them to go. >> big tommy's political pull
extended to the very top. he introduced 20-year-old nancy to senator john f. kennedy. she volunteered for kennedy when he ran for president, venn vi t visited the white house. but for nancy, any future in politics was put on pause after she married paul pelosi, a student she met at a class she took at georgetown university when he landed a finance job in new york, the couple moved there and started a family. >> how many kids and how many years? did you have a kid a year? >> well, when our youngest was born, our fifth child, our oldest child was turning six that week. >> that sounds a little unmanageable. >> well, it was god's blessing. there is nothing i will ever do in my life or have done in my
life that was as important, special, enjoyable, savered by us than being parents. >> young nancy had thought about going to law school. but when paul received a job offer in his hometown of san francisco, there was no doubt about their next move. >> adjusting to the west coast, was that an issue at all? >> it was far from my parents who were in baltimore, but that was home for paul. >> it was also where paul pelosi's family had ties to the local political establishment. >> you combine the connections that paul pelosi had and her sort of political dna. they lived on a very fancy part of san francisco. it was very natural for her to host fundraisers. >> over the years, pelosi would become one of the democratic party's most effective fundraisers, consolidating power by bringing in money for candidates all over the united states. >> if the chand leer was in this room just like this and nancy
asked the chand leer for money, money would pour out. >> but raising money was just the beginning. coming up -- >> that was really what took me from kitchen to congress. om kits i had a heart problem. i was told to begin my aspirin regimen, and i just didn't listen. until i almost lost my life. my doctors again ordered me to take aspirin, and i do. be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. listen to the doctor. take it seriously.
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use a little, pay a little. use a lot, just switch to unlimited. it's a new kind of network. call, visit or go to xfinitymobile.com. after moving to san francisco in 1969, nancy pelosi began to gravitate toward politics and political fund-raising. jerry brown's upstart presidential campaign in 1976 caught her attention. pelosi was taken by the young governor and convinced him to campaign in her home state of maryland. >> i want to discuss some issues. >> 1976, tell me if i'm correct, governor brown remembering sleeps in our family's home while campaigning for president. what do you remember about that
campaign? >> mccarthy was the speaker of the house there and he was the chair man of jerry's campaign. i said to them, i have friends in the grass roots organizations and the rest, and, so, why don't we have the governor come. and he agreed to do that. and he was sensational. >> with his rock star girlfriend along for a fund-raising concert, brown swept through maryland. >> i didn't think about maryland and baltimore. she got her brother and others that basically ran the campaign. >> thank you! >> brown pulled off an upset victory in the primary and gave nancy and the family credit. >> the whole campaign basically came out of, i might say, the delasandro organization. >> that's so cool. >> then jerry brown said you
have to take a role in the democratic party because i want one of my people there. >> got it. >> and i did. and here i am. >> it brought her out of the kitchen and into the big world of politics. >> in 1981, pelosi was selected to run the state democratic party. >> you don't get to do party chairman if you can't raise money. and that's certainly one of the ways she propelled herself. >> you are known as one of the most prolific fundraisers. i want to know how you do it. >> when i was chairman, i was really an organizer. i wasn't a fundraiser. i was an organizer who had to keep the doors open. but then i got to know a large number of people, so it's about having contacts among the progressives around the country. >> pelosi was a rising star in the democratic party, but always behind the scenes. never on the ticket herself. that was about to change.
in 1987, california congresswoman, a close friend of pelosi's, was diagnosed with cancer. >> shortly thereafter, she called me and she said, i want you to run. i said i've never even thought about running for office. i'm basically a shy person. i like promoting other people. i understand politics about how to win, but it's never been about me. she said i just want you to tell me that you will run because you love the issues. you should work on them. please tell me you will run. it will make me feel better. i said, well, i'll run. i don't know if i'm going to win because i've never run for office or never thought about running for office. i just want to know that you will run. just a couple weeks later, she passed away. >> that summer, pelosi ran in the neshl election for california's fifth congressional district. she was 46 years old. the race was a free for all with
14 candidates. >> she wasn't terribly well known, but she was very catching in democratic circles which gave her access to a great deal of money. >> but all of that money didn't translate into popularity with members of the party's progressive wing, who attacked pelosi as a rich political insider. >> how can she relate to people like me, single parent, working mother? >> it foreshadowed the political lightening rod she would become years down the road. >> it was a contentious primary and it was a hard race for nancy. >> she's never had a payroll or had to worry about it. >> i don't think you have to be sick to be a doctor or poor to understand the problems of the poor. >> while she was attacked for her family wealth, it was her ability to raise money that helped launch her political career. pelosi collected and spent a million dollars, more than all the other candidates combined.
>> as one of our legendary speakers in california once said, money is the mother's milk of politics. you got to buy television. you have to buy mailers. you have to get staff. >> when the dust cleared, pelosi was the last candidate standing. >> she ended up getting votes from moderates, even some conservatives. the irony here is, were it not for republicans and moderates, nancy pelosi never would have been in congress in the first place. >> your father, he was there when you were sworn in. >> yes. >> i can't imagine how, i don't know, beautiful that moment must have been. >> it was lovely because during the campaign he kept saying, don't worry about having a ticket for me for your swearing in because as a former member, i can go right on to the floor. i said, dad, i have to win first. i'm in a fight. i have to win first. but it was lovely that he was there. and two and a half months later, he passed away.
i didn't realize he was that close to the end, but it was wonderful that he was there. >> he was there. he was there for you. >> and my mother, too. >> pelosi's first order of the business was confronting the aids crisis. >> when i came to congress, the first day my colleagues to be said, when you are sworn in, just say yes, do you solemnly swear. don't say anything else. nobody wants to hear from a new member of congress. i said, okay, i will just do what i'm supposed to do if that's what i'm supposed to do. so i get sworn in and the speaker says, do you want to say a few words? so of course. i'm not going to turn that down, right? >> right, of course. >> so i thanked my parents and my constituents for the honor. and then i say, during my campaign i told my constituents
that when i came here i would tell them that i came to fight for hiv and aids funding. >> some of pelosi's new house colleagues were taken aback by her candor on the issue. >> and they said, why would you ever tell anybody that you came here for hiv and aids? that's the first thing they would know about you? so i said that because that's why i came here, because of hiv and aids. but it was a lesson to me about the discrimination this cause would have to face. >> a tough lesson in politics and one of many pelosi would learn as she found her way in washington. coming up -- >> i remember asking her, what do you see? what is your dream? what is your goal? and i remember her saying, i want to be speaker of the house. . ♪
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obvious challenge, making her way through a house of representatives that was 95% male. >> there were only 23 women members of congress out of 435. there were only 23. so when i came, every place i would go, they would stop me and say, you can't go there. you can't go there. members only. i would say, i am a member of congress. you are a member of congress, you can go any place you want. so shortly there alafter, i was looking for a vote, something for hiv/aids, no doubt because that was my focus and i started following one of my targets into the speaker's lobby and beyond. i started to go into this room. and the officers are saying, counsel woman, you can't go there. i said i'm a congresswoman. i can go anywhere i want. he said, congresswoman, it's the men's room. >> one place you can't go or you don't want to go. >> i don't want to go. what a thought. >> chuck schumer, now a close
ally and friend first came to know her shortly after she arrived in washington. >> when i was in the house, we had a diverse dinner group of congressmen that would get together every tuesday night. and george miller, one of the leaders of the group, says to us, i am bringing a new member of our group. she is the new congresswoman from san francisco, just elected, and she is going to be the first woman speaker. so before i ever met nancy pelosi, i was told nancy would be the first woman speaker. when i met her, i knew why he said it. >> former senator and fellow californian, barbara boxer also became close friends with pelosi when they served together in the house. >> i remember asking her, what do you see? what is your dream? what is your goal? and i remember her saying, i want to be speaker of the house. now, nancy does not remember this at all. i remember it as if it was yesterday. >> with the speakership still
years away, pelosi faced the first big test of her ability to master the political game in washington. in the summer of 2001, the democratic whip position opened up. in the history of congress, no woman had risen to that level. pelosi wanted the job, and she lobbied hard to get it. >> she made 150 phone calls to members of congress, each one patiently saying, you know, hi, it's nancy. i'm interested in becoming the whip. let me tell you why. >> nancy pelosi is somebody who knows our caucus. she knows the names of the grandkids of people in our caucus. she knows what college you went to. she knows what your preference is, whether it's red wine or white wine or no wine. >> the stage was set for a spirited showdown between pelosi and her long-time friend. >> there was this crazy history which they had been interns
together at amari land senate office 40 years earlier. they had gone their separate ways and now here they are running against each other. >> behind closed doors it was a tough fight. but in the end nancy pelosi prevailed. >> here is a whip as a similar po of your job. >> i never asked anyone to vote for me because i was a woman but i would hope no one would vote against me because i was a woman. >> it came at a critical time. with the country still reeling from september 11th, president bush ordered an invasion of afghanistan. one year later he sought congressional approval to invade iraq. >> if it proves necessary to enforce un security council demands. >> under pressure from the president, nearly all republicans backed the measure.
and in a show of bipartisan support, so did a majority of democrats in the senate. even the most powerful democrat in the house, minority leader, was behind it. >> if you're worried about terrorists getting weapons of mass destruction or their components from countries, the first candidate you worry about is iraq. >> but nancy pelosi, second in command, did not fall in line. flouting authority, she spearheaded the opposition to the resolution. >> i say flat-out that unilateral use of force without first exhausting every diplomatic remedy and other remedies and making a case to the american people will be harmful to our war on terrorism. >> she led a revolt against the leader of the democrats who stood in the rose garden with george bush. she led a majority of house democrats to vote against the war in iraq.
>> one of the worst mistakes our country has ever made was the war in iraq. i said at the time the intelligence does not support the threat. they said, are you calling the president a liar? i said no, i'm not calling him a liar. i'm stating a fact. it wasn't there. >> the joint resolution is passed. >> i never would ask anybody to vote a certain way on a war. i just told them why i was voting against the war. >> and that earned her a real strong following among a number of people on the left. >> in the run up to the 2004 presidential election, pelosi put the iraq war front and center. repeatedly hammering president bush. >> there has to be some change in the personnel in the administration. if the president doesn't want to make those changes, then we're just going to have to have a new president. >> in response to pelosi's attacks on the president, republicans struck back. giving rise to a new gop rallying cry, nancy pelosi, liberal menace. >> she is identifiable
democratic boogieman or boogieperson. >> she'll be the most liberal speaker of the house, ever, ever in this country. >> it will be so far to the left, they would guarantee the republicans re-election. >> why do you try to sack the quarterback? because the quarterback is burning you. she's winni ingwinning. coming up -- >> for our daughters and our granddaughters, today we have broken the marble ceiling. e broken the marble ceiling. along with support, chantix is proven to help you quit. with chantix you can keep smoking at first and ease into quitting. chantix reduces the urge so when the day arrives, you'll be more ready to kiss cigarettes goodbye. when you try to quit smoking, with or without chantix, you may have nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
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a third of argentina's population is still without power. the cause is unknown. now back to headliners, nancy pelosi. ♪ ♪ >> after a bitter and contention battle with the gop, nancy pelosi led democrats to victory in the 2006 mid-term elections. >> tonight the american people have called for a new direction. they have called for change for america. >> democrats picked up 31 seats in the house, winning the majority and capturing control of the chamber for the first time in 12 years. after the new congress was sworn in on january 4th, 2007, the democratic caucus voted for their next speaker of the house. for many, there was only one choice, nancy pelosi. >> she was very well positioned
to pick up that mantle and very well positioned to take advantage of it. >> pelosi's control of the caucus was so complete, not a single democrat ran against her. >> the honorable nancy pelosi of the state of california is duly elected speaker of the house of representatives for the 110th congress. >> nobody has gotten close to the speakership being a woman. suddenly here is pelosi. >> even pelosi's rivals couldn't help but acknowledge the moment. >> our leaders have always selected a man for the responsibility and honor as serving as speaker of the house. always, that is, until today. >> to watch the gavel be actually handed to pelosi, into a woman's hands, it is a seminal moment in women and power in washington. >> for our daughters and our granddaughters, today we have broken the marble ceiling.
>> she's underappreciated because no one really stops to think about what the job of speaker is, that she's the first woman to gain the trust of all these members, half of whom think they should be president of the united states and the other half think they should be a united states senator. i don't think i will ever forget nancy having the children around here. >> let's hear it for the children. we're here for the children. >> and suddenly kids come running up. >> it is an amazing piece of tape. and, yeah, it doesn't get any better. >> nancy pelosi became america's first madam speaker. just as the democrats took control of both chambers of congress. >> nancy pelosi walked into a situation that would be the dream of almost any speaker of the house. that was, she had a large
democratic majority. there was a massive democratic majority in the senate as well. >> change has come to america. >> two years later, the country elected its first african-american president, ushering a new era with ambitious goals. >> there be no doubt, health care reform cannot wait. it must not wait and it will not wait another year. >> high on the priority list, sweeping legislation that would give millions of uninsured americans health care. responsible for the critical task of getting the votes in the house, nancy pelosi. >> talk to me about why the affordable care act to you is fundamental. >> we believe that health care is a right for all, not a privilege for the few. and that it's not only about affordable care. it is about patient protections and affordable care. >> we do not want this bill passed. we want to kill the bill. >> reaction to what republicans
disparagingly called obamacare was heated. >> go back to washington, d.c. and tell them, leave our health care alone. fix our medicare. we deserve better. we are taking a stand today. [ applause ] >> this was the most unconstitutional thing i have ever seen in my life. >> amid the intense debate over obamacare, senator ted kennedy, a staunch supporter of health care reform, passed away. the loss of his senate seat to republican scott brown cost the democrats their 60 seat super majority. any health care bill now needed republican support to pass in the senate, which did not exist. to many of capitol hill, the affordable care act looked dead on arrival. but not to nancy pelosi. >> the press would say to me, it doesn't look like you are going to pass this.
i said, we believe this is the challenge of our generation. >> behind closed doors, rahm emanuel pushed to scrap much of the bill for a series of smaller, more incremental measures with the better chance of republican cooperation. >> the white house wanted to break it up into pieces. and nancy pelosi said, no, under no circumstances. we are going to move forward, and we are going to win this vote. >> the president sided with pelosi. >> a time for talk is over. it is time to vote. >> by march 2010, democrats found a way forward, an intricate congressional procedure that would allow them to maneuver the affordable care act through both houses without republican support. but first speaker pelosi would have to coral the necessary democratic votes in the house, which would muster all of her political mastery and capital.
[ applause ] >> we are on the verge of making great history for the american people and in doing so, we will make great progress for them as well. >> she knows how to count votes in the house and play the game in the house like few other people have. and to keep people with her in terms of subcommittee assignments, contracts, things that only a speaker really has the power to do. >> we're not going to let any barriers stand in the way. if there is a barrier, we will go up the fence, we will push open the gate. if that doesn't work, we'll climb the fence. if that doesn't work, we'll pole vault in. if that doesn't work, we'll parachute in, but we're not letting anything stand in the way of our passing the affordable care act. >> but a mu ttiny e represented within pelosi's own party. >> she basically said, if we don't stick together, it's not going to pass. n't stick togethet going to pass.
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in march of 2010, with the house on the brink of passing the affordable care act, members of nancy pelosi's caucus rebelled. >> the question to want is whether or not right leading democrats will go along when the votes are cast tomorrow afternoon. tonight it is down to the wire. >> conservative democrats led by michigan's bart stupak refused to vote for the bill without assurances that federal funds would not be used for abortions. >> do you think the bill will pass right now, congressman? >> right now today? no. >> house speaker pelosi joined forces with the white house and brokered a crucial, last-minute compromise. an executive order guaranteeing no federal funds would be used
for abortion. >> with the help of the president and the speaker, we have come with an agreement to protect the sangty of life in the health care reform. >> it is never easy to get people from a variety of backgrounds inside your own tent to cooperate. she's really good at giving away enough candy to keep people in the tent. >> on march 21st came the final vote with the future of health care reform resting on the speaker's shoulders. >> there were no republicans who were supporting it at all. it was something where liberals demanded a public option, which was a more progressive piece of it. conservatives said it is almost like socialism. pelosi kept them altogether. >> the vote was a cliff hanger years in the making and the ultimate test of nancy pelosi's political mastery. >> she basically said, if we don't stick together, it is not going to pass. >> on this vote the yahs are
220. the nahs are 211. the bill is passed. >> two days later, president obama signed the health care reform bill into law. >> we are done. [ applause ] >> after the historic victory, speaker pelosi became an even bigger target for the gop. >> these hats might make us look a little undignified, but i think the message says it all. fire nancy pelosi. >> in the run up to the 2010 midterms, republicans like then national committee chairman michael steele hit the campaign trail with their sights set on pelosi. >> are we going to fire pelosi? >> the power center at that time was not with barack obama. it was on capitol hill. it was manifest in the leadership of nancy pelosi as speaker of the house. and her ability to at that time coral the votes she needed to get obamacare, the affordable care act, passed. >> prepublicans across the
country joined in with a barrage of increasingly vitriolic political ads, even portraying pelosi as a witch. >> i believe it is time to throw a little water on politicians who say one thing and do another like nancy pelosi. >> come election day, it appeared the strategy worked. in a crushing blow, democrats lost 63 seats in the house, giving republicans majority control. >> she became a representation of all those politicians out there that weren't doing their job and weren't meeting the expectation of the people and then had the arrogance to come at you and say, well, now, this is how we are going to run your health care. >> for pelosi, it was a low point in a long career of highs. she chose, instead, to run for house minority leader. >> she surprised a lot of people after that election when she said, i'm going to stay around. >> but pelosi faced a
challenger. north carolina's heath shuler, a member of the blue dogs. >> there are more than just the blue dogs who have a concern with what is going on. and that message has been loud and clear. >> he garnered 43 votes of support, but it wasn't even close. pelosi finished with 150 and retained control of the caucus asthma jo as majority leader. >> she knows the ins and outs of the people she leads. that's what makes her such a great leader. >> this is an experienced, diverse leadership. it is a team that took us to victory in '05 and '06 and will take us to victory again. >> but even the salvy veteran did not see the political phenomenon known as donald trump coming. >> in one of the biggest upsets in american history, donald trump won the presidency to
become the country's 45th commander in chief. early on, the minority leader clashed with the president on a host of issues, including immigration. in early 2018 with activists across the country protesting president trump's attempts to end the daca program. >> thank you, mr. speaker. >> pelosi literally took a stand, speaking for more than eight hours, demanding protections for dreamers. it was the longest continuous speech in house history. done at age 77 and in four inch heels. >> let us thank and acknowledge the dreamers for their courage, their optimism, their inspiration to make america more american. thank you, my colleagues. >> we are a nation of immigrants. the president has recognized the value of immigration to america
except this president. what he is doing is not only wrong in terms of who we are as a nation, it's really a departure from the belief that we're all god's children, that everyone has a spark of divinity and we have to respect that. >> when voters went to the polls for the 2018 midterms, two years of donald trump's presidency inspired a blue wave in the house. >> the votes keep coming, and the democrats keep winning. >> wow, what a night. what a night! [ applause ] >> democrats picked up 40 seats in the house to claim the majority. a caucus that included dozens of freshmen representatives. nancy pelosi expected to lead them as house speaker. but many were looking for a fresh face at the helm. >> new questions about the future of democratic leadership in the house. a group of democrats say they have enough votes to block nancy pelosi. >> in my district, you have to hear what people are telling
you. >> the detriments of nancy pel low in the minds of a lot of people is that she's been around the block a few too many times, that she's not a brand that extends beyond the democratic base. >> pelosi was able to quell the rebellion but at a cost. she agreed to step down as speaker in four years, a compromise that signalled the beginning of the end of her career. but also at 78, her unmatchable skills as a political survivor. >> this time she had to stitch together, you know, alliances among some people who initially said they wouldn't support her, but she got over 200 members of the caucus to get behind her. >> having once again asserted her control over the house, nancy pelosi was elected speaker when the 116th congress began in january of 2019. >> this business is not for the faint of heart. it is understanding the political process and having a
spine of steel. >> it was the first time a speaker returned to power after losing the majority in more than half a century. [ applause ] >> i'm particularly proud to be woman proud to be a woman speaker of the house of this congress, which marks the 100th year of women having the right to vote. >> back in power, nancy pelosi was about to face her biggest battle yet. coming up -- >> the state of the union speech has been canceled by nancy pelosi because she doesn't want to hear the truth. >> the second speakership for pelosi pitted her against president trump as the leader of the democratic party. calves. liberty mutual customizes your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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>> after overcoming resistance from opponents within her democratic caucus, nancy pelosi officially received the speaker's gavel on january 23rd, 2019. >> the second speakership for pelosi has been the truly important one. it has pitted her against president trump as leader of the democratic party. >> the fight started the month before she was sworn in. when she and senate minority leader chuck schumer met with president trump about a deal that would include building the wall he proposed on the mexican border. >> the president so often just makes stuff up, numbers, facts, et cetera. we're going to confront him. not in a harsh by, we're going to confront him. >> if i needed the votes in the house i'd have them in one session, it would be done. >> to those who questioned pelosi's ability to deal with president trump, the way she
conducted herself in the oval office was a turning point. >> but there are no votes in the house, a majority of votes, for a wall no matter where you start. >> exactly right. >> we had planned to sort of one-two punch ahead of time, but it worked beyond our wildest expectations. >> the most unfortunate thing, we came in here in good faith, and we're entering into a -- this kind of a discussion in the public view. >> but it's not there, nancy, full transparency. >> i wanted to kind of say, why do we have to do this in public because we have to contradict you. it was his insistence that the press stay there. and i think that he thought he could just get away with saying whatever he wanted to say without any challenge. >> did it strike you at that moment maybe he's not very smart? were you surprised? >> well, no, i'm never surprised. what i was, though, was that this is the type of person used to getting his own way. >> i am proud to shut down the government for border security,
chuck. because the people of this country don't want criminals and people that have lots of problems and drugs pouring into our country. so i will take the mantle. i will be the one who shut it down. i'm not going to blame you for it. >> the person who shuts the government down almost always loses. >> what followed was the longest federal shutdown in u.s. history. stretching for 35 days. >> the reality is that the president could end this trump shutdown and reopen government today. and he should. >> as the shutdown continued, pelosi disinvited the president from his own state of the union address in the house chamber, while giving him the option of delivering his speech from the oval office or in writing. >> t.s. elliot once said, most things don't end with a bang, they end with a whimper. this shutdown ended with a whimper. it was president trump having to
recede and spin himself out of the shutdown and say, it was over. >> in a short while i will sign a bill to open our government. >> no one should ever underestimate the speaker, as donald trump has learned. >> when the state of the union occurred, nearly two weeks after the government reopened, the speaker read along while the president spoke. >> and embrace the boundless potential of cooperation, compromise, and the common good. >> as the chamber applauded, pelosi replied with a clap that seemed to radiate with sarcasm. >> at that moment he said he wanted to work in a bipartisan way. and while some will doubt what i say now, honestly, i was applauding him, now you're talking, now you're talking. but people thought it was more a mock of him than anything. >> it was like, sure, okay. >> no, honestly, it was, okay, now he's talking. >> people in her party loved it because they wanted to see that
confidence in the trump era from their own leadership. >> republicans saw the clap more as a rude gesture. but president trump was uncharacteristically silent on the matter. in fact, pelosi seemed oddly immune from the president's social media venom and name calling. that all changed after pelosi accused the president of obstructing justice in the russia probe. >> we believe that no one is above the law, including the president of the united states. and we believe that the president of the united states is engaged in a cover-up. >> trump responded with insults. >> crazy nancy. she's not the same person. she's lost it. >> and as some members of her party pushed for impeachment, polito reported that pelosi told democratic leaders the president deserved imprisonment instead. on fox news, president trump's respectful tone toward pelosi now turned to fury.
>> i think she's a disgrace. she's a nasty, vindictive, horrible person. >> we are at a place where the president of the united states is not honoring his oath of office. he is in violation of the separation of powers, which is the heart of the matter of our constitution. beyond that you wonder, what do russians have on this president politically, financially, personally, that he is allowing them to get away with disrupting our election? >> those questions may ultimately fall to congress to answer. no matter what happens during the rest of her tenure, nancy pelosi has already forged an indelible place in the american political narrative. >> she has shaped history, she's made history, she hasn't stopped making history. and regardless how tough and rough the waters are, she's the best swimmer of all. >> i keep saying about our
founders, e. pleasure bus union numb, from many, one. they couldn't possibly imagine how many we would be or how different we would be, but they knew we had to be one. we had certain values and principles that we cannot abandon. >> and you're certain we're going to be okay? >> oh, yeah. we'll be okay. because i have confidence in the american people. this is an msnbc special presentation. >> being a gay person, a lesbian in the '50s, not only were you a depraved person, bad person, you could be arrested and put in jail. >> oh my god. i think i am one of these people they're talking about. >> commie, pinko fag. it was a true witch hunt. >> there's only so long you can