March 6th, 2009
05:00 AM ET
14 years ago

Brad Pitt in the House


Photo Credit: Getty Images

(CNN) –- Actor and sustainable housing advocate Brad Pitt brought his pitch to the nation’s capital Thursday, meeting with President Obama at the White House and Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Capitol Hill.

Watch: Brad Pitt visits Capitol Hill

After a brief stop by the executive mansion to meet with the president and his climate czar, Pitt met with Pelosi in her Capitol office to share details of his charity housing efforts in New Orleans.

One thing’s for sure: policy conferences on the Hill don’t usually pull out a crowd like this.

A throng of giggling fans, mostly female, gathered to catch a glimpse of "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" star as he posed for pictures following their meeting.

Pelosi hailed Pitt’s work for the city of New Orleans as a “model for the nation.”

“It really is an honor to have him here and I know for some of my staff, and for bragging rights for my children and grandchildren, a real treat for me as well,” she said.

Pelosi, posing with Pitt and South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn at the congressional photo-op following their meeting, said the actor had been telling her about how the homes his foundation has built built to a "green standard," with utility bills of less than $10 a month.

"It's possible," said Pitt.

The actor’s foundation, "Make it Right," works to construct sustainable housing for low-income residents in New Orleans who lost their homes in Hurricane Katrina. Launched in 2007, Pitt's project focuses on NOLA's Lower Ninth Ward, a region ravaged by the 2005 hurricane. Pitt shares a home in the French Quarter with his girlfriend, actress Angelina Jolie.

“I just want to say thank you to the Speaker for opening up the doors for us to come in and discuss the rebuilding efforts, the current rebuilding efforts going on in New Orleans, and to how we can expand this idea of affordability and sustainability which we think we have a model that works," Pitt said, amid a flurry of camera flashes.

Pitt’s companion Angelina Jolie was also in Washington Thursday, shooting scenes for her upcoming film, “Salt.”

soundoff (243 Responses)
  1. Lilly Rose

    Brad Pitt is amazing. He does not even have to care, but he does. The Repiglicans should take a page from his book. And all of you fools who insist that President Obama is making the stock market fall, well it went up when he announced his house plan IT WENT UP. I didn't see a word about that. If you don't have anything to add to helping the country, why not STFU. The Republicans way of doing things didn't work for if it had, we would not be in this mess. Things would be fine and we can't wait for the 'market to correct itself'. I am not nearly as afraid of socialism as I am of the Republican idea of 'leave it alone, it will correct itself."

    March 5, 2009 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  2. CCrellin

    While I am a supporter of Obama, having some lame celebrity show up and make a comment is a joke.

    Actors act, that doesn't mean they have a lick of knowledge of anything else.

    We should end this buddy-buddy nonsense with so-called celebrities, what do they know more than you or me?

    March 5, 2009 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  3. brandi

    why dont they ever give help or aide to the areas really effected by hurricanes? New Orleans is not the only city affected by natural disasters, this was just their first taste, but they got all the money? why about the entire cities wiped out in Mississippi? can some one help them? and has congress turned into Hollywood? i think the answer is yes. this is just silly, students like me everyday volunteer to help the suffering but we dont get government or media fame for it. Helping others: Its called being a human being, its called being a proud, patriotic American.

    March 5, 2009 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  4. Kimberly in Azizona

    WOW~some VERY VERY ignorant repukes on here! Brad Pitt has given MILLIONS to homeless, and is building homes!!!!!!!!!!!!! How DARE you morons judge him. Atleast he is not a millionaire that is buying mansions and cars and screwing the American people. He is doing nothing but good, and bringing awarness to many many things. You people get more sick by the day, and thank GOD we have people like him, and not like BUSH and his millions doing NOTHING FOR ANYONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Brad Pitt deserves ALL the attention he is getting, and tell me what has your fat cow pill popin God rush limpball done???? HUH???? NOTHING! You give him the mic, worship him make him millions, and he DOES NOTHING!!!! What the HELL makes rush worthy of anything??? Because he hates America you love him! Shame on all you people on the right!!!!!!!

    March 5, 2009 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  5. Scotish Mama of Missouri

    Arithmetic is Liberal Thank you! What grid then? Nice! Wish I was there to learn about the techniques of Brad's project. I suppose to bring it to D.C. it might bring future citys back better than ever.
    2 becky's should Brad drive?
    Gary-Pork is on the repubs too. Jindal is #2 in the U.S.
    Capt. No, you would have the money do something and then be listened to like ..have information.
    Annie-Pitt puts light on plight and Angelina knows that Africa is a Country.
    Nevada dude – Shine on?
    Niki ohio-Do something to be recognized.
    Bill -Quit looking at Brad's chest.

    March 5, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  6. andre

    I cant believe the amount of negativity here! The guy is trying to contribute to the community – let him do it!! He really did not have to care. I doubt if he is making money through these fact he could make more by spending time in Hollywood. His actions do not warrant such nasty remarks really. I hope he continues to do what he is doing. Which is helping those in need. I am not gay, but if I were, he will be the only guy I would make out with 🙂

    March 5, 2009 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  7. Vincent

    ...and yet another actor positioning himself for office. Do we Americans really take these people serious? I'm not sure who has the most googley eyes – congress or the easily dooped public. Yes, he has done something nice, cudos or cookies Mr. Pitt?

    March 5, 2009 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  8. Debi

    Pitt, who has no political gain here, has done more for the people of New Orleans than the elected officials..... including Jindal.

    So, complain all you want about Pitt just wanting to show off...... he is a private citizen that just decided to do good with his popularity.

    At least someone has finally done something for the people of New Orleans. I did not see any of these rich CEOs coming out of their mansions to help. Bush and family with their many houses, did NOTHING for these people.

    March 5, 2009 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  9. JB

    You have to admit, Obama is the exact opposite of Clinton. He is not working. He is publicly galavanting around with celebrities, going to basketball games, and never leaving Washington, all the while, our economy is crumbling. Just a prediction (and I am no economist), and I will say I told you so, when it happens. Tomorrow, our stock market will go down because of the job numbers. Then, on Monday. . . another black monday (all crashes occur on a monday). We will see 5000 on Monday. And the next 4 years will be spent in a DEPRESSION. Obama, who I voted for continues to do what is wrong for the economy while pandering to the blue collar people of this country who made dumb decisions, too interested in IPODs and 60,000 dollar cars. These people in addition to dumb decisions by Obama will be the downfall of this country. And then, dems will balme Bush. This will not be Bush's fault, but, dems will say it is so. Just a prediction. I hope I am wrong.

    March 5, 2009 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  10. Nicole

    Umm...12,000 students and community members congregated on DC this past weekend to lobby our government in making a climate treaty to show at Copenhagen. It's nice that actors are involved too, but it seems like we pay more attention to one actor visiting DC than 12,000 people who voted in the past election based on environmental issues and physically lobbied our government this Monday, which was the largest lobby day on energy and climate issues in history.

    March 5, 2009 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  11. Bruce


    = So what?

    March 5, 2009 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  12. Len

    For Jim, Burlington NC – This is for you if CNN is willing to post it.

    Definition of Socialism:

    1. Any of various theories or systems of social organization where the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.
    2. The stage in Marxist-Leninist theory intermediate between capitalism and communism, where collective ownership of the economy under the dictatorship of the proletariat has not been successfully achieved yet.

    March 5, 2009 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  13. nadinewi

    I'm glad to see Brad Pitt bringing attention to New Orleans. The Bush administration really dropped the ball on helping these people. If it takes a famous person to get the much needed help to the people of New Orleans, then so be it. President Obama is sending more money to help rebuild homes. I'd much rather read about people receiving help in New Orleans then about Gov. Bobby Jindal's bad speech.

    March 5, 2009 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  14. Chris W,

    Brad and Angelina need to build a house for the Octuplets mom, a very very big house. She was only trying to be like Ms. Jolie, you know, "Mother Nature".
    Put these two families together and you could fill the lower ninth ward.....

    March 5, 2009 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  15. Josh in LA

    I live about an hour from N.O. it is a beautiful but troubled place. Years of DEMOCRATIC CONTROL have driven it down. Most of the people had been hearing "this is the big one" for years. Each time they would pack up and sit in grid lock on bridges getting out. After so many false alarms many people began CHOOSING to ride it out. Sadly, they were not prepared when it finally was the big one.

    Not to mention we had an inept Democratic Gov. This past round of hurricanes with Gov. Jindal in charge it was a better story. As he said after the Presidents address was when govt got involved & stopped citizens from going to the rescue of their fellow makind due to "red tape" that people stopped getting rescued.

    We need to look to local & state govts not the federal politicos in DC. Tax dollars should stay in communities.

    Most of the posters here (some from New Orleans) have no idea what happened in N.O. except what you probably saw in some "documentary" from Spike Lee. Democrats failed the city and they keep voting for thiefs like Cold Cash Jefferson.

    March 5, 2009 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  16. Now is the time..

    Way to go Brad!! You rock!! Many actors are off partying and spending money like drunken soldiers.. and you're actually contributing something worthwhile to society.. how many are doing that? So yes, we reward good behavior. Thank you for being a good citizen (albeit very talented & wealthy actor). 🙂

    March 5, 2009 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  17. tisha

    Independent March 5th, 2009 9:27 pm ET

    Wow, doesn't get more shallow and stupid than this. Just another example of how easily americans are seduced by celebrity. Is pitt a good actor? Yes. Does his opinion mean anything more than mine or your own? No. But he certainly wants to capitalize on others suffering to increase his stature in the world (a billionaire building a few "sustainable" homes and then proclaiming, and promoting himself in the process, some type of radical breakthrough is anything but -sounds a lot like our self absorbed celebrity potus). Anyone who can't see through this insincerity probably didn't see through Obama's silky smooth (not to mention annoyingly condescending) but ultimately meaningless and empty rhetoric.

    Are you sure it doesn't get any more stupid? Please explain to me how helping people is shallow or stupid and how he is trying to capitalize on that? It is a sad day when you have people saying something negative when someone is trying to help others. I mean he is Brad Pitt who is with Angelina Jolie I'm pretty sure they don't need to do anything for publicity. If he had all the money in the world and chose to do this for people it wouldn't matter, what matters is that he is helping. Heaven help you if for some reason you may find your self needing help and othesr considered it stupid or shallow to do so. Be blessed!!!!!

    March 5, 2009 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  18. doctorj

    I have nothing but respect for Brad Pitt's efforts to help rebuild my hometown of New Orleans. It is one of the largest rebuilding efforts in the city. To date they have 6 homes built. SIX HOMES IN ALMOSTf FOUR YEARS!!! That is 6 more homes than would have been rebuilt without Mr. Pitt. I do not say this to denigrate him at all, but to let Americans know this is what this country has become. An American city is almost completely wiped off the face of the Earth, and NO HOMES are rebuilt by government, 150 homes are rebuilt by Habitat for Humanity, 200 homes are rebuilt by the St. Bernard Project, and 6 homes by the Make it Right Foundation. That is it folks. 200,000 homes lost and that is the best this country can do to help. New Orleans has rebuilt by the fortitude of the people that love her, but government... forget about it. Know that if the unbelievable hits your community, you are on your own. Don't believe any promises the government tells you because they will never materialize.

    March 5, 2009 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
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