House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the most powerful elected official in the Democratic Party, rebuked President Trump as an enemy of working women in a speech at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday night.
“As speaker, I’ve seen firsthand Donald Trump’s disrespect for facts, for working families, and for women in particular — disrespect written into his policies toward our health and our rights, not just his conduct,” said Pelosi. “But we know what he doesn’t: that when women succeed, America succeeds.”
Pelosi, of San Francisco, is the first and only woman to have served as the speaker of the House of Representatives, a post she held from 2007 to 2011 and reclaimed in 2019 after suburban voters, many of them women, propelled Democrats back into the House majority.
Pelosi’s remarks at the convention — where the party is welcoming the first woman of color to appear on its ticket, vice presidential pick Kamala Harris, the junior senator from California — come also as Pelosi remains locked in combat with congressional Republicans and the Trump administration on a variety of fronts. She blasted Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as an obstructionist.
“Who is standing in the way? Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump,” said Pelosi, who was wearing a white jacket in a tribute to the suffragists who fought for women’s right to vote. “Our nation faces the worst health and economic catastrophe in our history.”
Congressional Democrats led by Pelosi have pushed for an extension of the $600 weekly unemployment benefit that recently expired under the CARES Act, in addition to aid for state and local governments punished by the coronavirus crisis.
Republicans have pushed for a significantly pared-down stimulus package, and the parties’ inability to strike a deal meant that benefits expired in July, leaving millions of Americans uncertain of when further relief from the pandemic’s economic devastation might arrive.
This week Pelosi also announced plans to recall the House to challenge the Trump administration’s reductions of service for the U.S. Postal Service, which have led to widespread delays of deliveries and concerns that mail ballots might not arrive in time to be counted in the November election.
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