Pelosi plays the gender card, round two:

Pelosi calls Cheney swipe undignified

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says a swipe that Vice President Cheney took at Democratic House leaders is “beneath the dignity of his office.”

Capitol Hill was abuzz Thursday with discussion of the vice president’s assertion in an interview with Politico that House Democratic leaders had been surprisingly supine: “They are not carrying the big sticks I would have expected.”

Cheney added that when he served in the House, “We would not have had a Speaker who, from my perspective, is that far out of the sort of mainstream — she is a San Francisco Democrat, certainly entitled to her views, but able to dictate policy as effectively as she apparently does to the rest of the caucus.”

The speaker, a few hours after winning a long-sought victory on an energy bill that increases auto efficiency requirements, said in an interview with Politico that she had paid little attention to the hullabaloo.

“To tell you the truth, I’ve been really busy the last 24 hours” Pelosi said. “How can I say this with the dignity of the office that I hold, and especially the dignity of the office that the vice president holds? It’s so beneath the dignity of his office — and mine — that I don’t even want to address it.”

Here’s the full context of the remarks:

Q It’s an interesting time, so we really are eager to talk to you about especially a lot of the stuff that’s happening on Capitol Hill right now. But I’d love — I mean, I’d love your overall assessment from — of what’s been happening on the Hill, like Pelosi’s leadership and how Democrats have sort of handled their end of negotiating with you guys, whether it’s Iraq, the economy, spending — dealing with that right now. What is your assessment of how the Democratic Congress is handling —

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Well, I don’t think they’re doing all that well. That probably wouldn’t surprise anybody. I just think — I think if you look at the track record on what they’ve been able to move, on important items that are sort of basic need-to-do-every-year kinds of things, like the appropriations process, I think the record is pretty dismal. We’ve got one appropriations bill so far that we’ve got signed; we’ve still got 11 pending. And here we are at the end of the calendar year, well into the new fiscal year, and I think — I look at that and see that as an indication in terms of their capacity to function as not a good indicator.

I think the refusal to move the war supplemental to support the troops until after the first of the year is a mistake. I say that in part as a former Secretary of Defense. It’s a terrible way to run a railroad — talk about Defense has got some money they can move around and so forth — just because it’s big doesn’t mean that’s a smart way to operate. It’s not. And I’m, frankly, surprised at why, after all of the efforts they’ve made to try to hook up various provisions on Iraq to the spending bill, they’ve been unsuccessful.

In the final analysis, the troops shouldn’t suffer for that, and we ought to be able to pass an emergency supplemental, as we’ve done in years past, to make certain that the troops have got what they need in the field, the department can run efficiently, that the investments that are required to sustain the effort that I think obviously is bearing fruit in Iraq needs to go forward.

I’m puzzled why they are so wedded to their political view that Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid aren’t going to move that legislation — said, absolutely not, there won’t be another vote on this matter in this Congress. I think that’s a big mistake.

I’m also somewhat surprised — I look at the House — there are members of the House I worked closely with over the years when I was Secretary of Defense who would ordinarily have been staunch advocates for this kind of legislation, who no longer are staunch advocates — and I’m referring to my friend, Jack Murtha — I think of all of them as friends of mine — but Jack and other senior leaders who now all march to the tune of Nancy Pelosi, to an extent I had not seen, frankly, with any previous Speaker. And I’m surprised by that. I think of John Dingell and the energy business. This is a hot item right now. But I don’t see John Dingell driving that train. It looks to me like Nancy Pelosi is driving that train. And that is — well, it’s surprising when I think of the — I’m trying to think how to say all of this in a gentlemanly fashion — but the Congress I served in, that wouldn’t have happened. We would not have had a Speaker who, from my perspective, is that far out of the sort of mainstream — she is a San Francisco Democrat, certainly entitled to her views, but able to dictate policy as effectively as she apparently does to the rest of the caucus.

Q Well, did any of those guys lose their spine? Is that what you’re saying?

THE VICE PRESIDENT: I was being very diplomatic in the way I phrased it. (Laughter.) They’re not carrying the big stick I would have expected with the Democrats in the majority.

Harry Reid rolled over and played lapdog (via the Politico article):

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) did not comment on the remark but said in a Politico interview that “someone I was with said that” the comment sounded sexist.

Uh, no, what the comment did is sound too close to home for the spineless wonders that comprise the House and Senate “leadership.”

This reminds me of how Pelosi acted two months into her leadership role in the House, during the issue of what size plane she should be allowed to use to fly to and from SF in, when she foolishly complained that she was being picked on because she was a woman.

And now Cheney is using the same metaphor that has been used by President Teddy Roosevelt (the sexist pig!), amongst other popular politicians of both political stripes, but because Cheney’s using it all of a sudden that means he’s being sexist? Get real. How about he’s attacking her because she’s, like he said, so far out of the mainstream as an anti-war San Francisco liberal who symbolizes the weaknesses of the Democratic party so, um, well?

I’ll say it again that Pelosi needs to grow a spine if she wants to prove to the US how tough she supposedly is rather than engage in this sort of petty nonsense over a comment that was intended to highlight those Democrat weaknesses.

And speaking of silly liberal women, the Huffington Post interviewed opinion writer and WH press irritant Helen Thomas on her experience as a “journalist” and here’s some of what she had to say – (h/t: Liberty Pundit) emphasis added:

Q. What would you say to a young reporter who, in their exuberance, published something that turns out to not be true?

A. If it isn’t too earth-shaking, then I would assure them, “This is what you did wrong…” and give them a second chance. But I don’t think you get another chance if you make a mistake involving a big story.

Q. Do you think technology is changing that? That a good reporter will always find a venue because there are so many media outlets now?

A. No, but I do think it is kind of sad when everybody who owns a laptop thinks they’re a journalist and doesn’t understand the ethics. We do have to have some sense of what’s right and wrong in this job. Of how far we can go. We don’t make accusations without absolute proof. We’re not prosecutors. We don’t assume.


Update: I’d be remiss if I didn’t congratulate Amy Proctor for being honored with Andrew Sullivan’s “Malkin Award” (which she explains is supposed to equate to a “hyper-partisan conservative citation”). Congrats, Amy! You know you’ve made it when … ;)

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