May 19th, 2009
06:27 PM ET
11 years ago

Hoyer says he backs Pelosi

Steny Hoyer is standing behind his colleague, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Steny Hoyer is standing behind his colleague, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Seeking to put an end to questions about what Speaker Nancy Pelosi knew about waterboarding and demonstrate he is standing behind her, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on Tuesday strongly defended the speaker.

"I want to be very clear because I think there's been some misinterpretation of my views. ... I believe the speaker," Hoyer told reporters. "I believe the speaker when she says she was not specifically briefed on the types of - in very polite terms - enhanced interrogation techniques that were being employed."

Last week Hoyer had to clarify comments he made that seemed to suggest he supported an investigation into what Pelosi knew about waterboarding. He insisted he was talking only about a probe focused on former Bush administration officials who authorized the harsh interrogation methods.

A former leadership rival of Pelosi, Hoyer blamed Republicans for the continued focus on the speaker, saying, "It continues to be a Republican tactic to distract the public from focusing on what was done, what the justification for doing it was, and for ... President Bush's comment that we don't torture."

Pressed further on how the speaker could put the issue behind her, the majority leader tried to turn the tables on the press. "Republicans are going to stay on it as long as you guys keep printing it, as long as it continues to be a television item - not about the substance, but about the distraction," he said. "As long as you want to feed on it, the Republicans will continue to feed you."

Hoyer characterized the speaker's support among House Democrats as "solid" and said not a single member has raised the issue with him on the House floor or in meetings.

Filed under: Nancy Pelosi • Steny Hoyer
soundoff (72 Responses)
  1. Rickymo


    May 19, 2009 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  2. Hoyer is lying.....

    anyone who saw Pelosi's interview knows she was lying and that makes Hoyer equally culpable. Further, Pelosi makes a big mistake messing with the CIA-she better have soneone else start her car for the next 2 years--

    May 19, 2009 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  3. No Hope

    another LIER backing a BIGGER LIER.

    May 19, 2009 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  4. Albo58

    Hoyer is a complete lacky! Pelosi made a complete fool out of herself and everybody with any sense at all could see that except this jerk!

    May 19, 2009 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  5. inuk of the north

    In political circles, a 'show of support' is the best signal that someone's about to be thrown under the bus.

    May 19, 2009 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  6. Proud DHS radical

    So we have another democrat that believes the CIA lied to congress.

    May 19, 2009 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  7. Idiot_Pelosi

    Pelosi lied, and we all know it. This idiot kept contradicting her own statements, much less what others were able to recall.

    Pelosi is an embarassment to Congress. She is an incompetent idiot that needs to be thrown out since the fools in the Bay Area are stupid enough to keep electing her.

    May 19, 2009 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  8. David in West Virginia

    I agree with Sten Hoyner, House Majority Whip in his statement that the Bush Administration needs to be investigated for Torture, not interrogation. It was outright torture.

    May 19, 2009 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  9. John

    Yeah she's telling the truth.....give me a break. She's trying to cover her own rear end, plain and simple. It seems that more people think she is lying than telling the truth.....but the truth in this country isn't worth anything anymore.

    May 19, 2009 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  10. Joe

    Now we have a prominent Democrat lying to cover for another.
    Lies are hard to defend but the truth is not, come clean Pelosi.

    May 19, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  11. Rick in OP

    The Democrats are digging a deeper hole for themselves by sticking by Pelosi.

    May 19, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  12. Ralph

    Congressional Democrats

    Here is a definition of torture:
    A condition in which the Subject begs to be killed so that they will no longer suffer.

    All else is an uncomfortable situation, harassment, humiliation or “enhanced interrogation technique”.

    Pelosi lies....

    May 19, 2009 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  13. New Yorker

    She knew and that's that.

    May 19, 2009 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  14. jayjayaye Utah

    "It continues to be a Republican tactic to distract the public from focusing on what was done, what the justification for doing it was, and for … President Bush's comment that we don't torture."

    I haven't heard it stated better or more clearly. Good on you, Mr. Majority Leader!

    May 19, 2009 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  15. TCM

    great, another fruitcake waiting in the soon as Pelosi gets the boot, we'll have to deal with this moron

    May 19, 2009 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  16. Kathy

    What is this she was the minority leader in the congress and the republicans let her know it!!!! Why is this an issue what about the people in charge that lied. Do I care if she calls the CIA liars NO they are absolute liars and we all know it!! Did they not say there was prooff of WMD's. My do the republicans have selective memories and them asking her to apologize for What!! For BUSH and CHENEY was she responisible for this war and all the hate for Americans out in the world. NO THE REPUBLICANS are and they must think we are all so stupid and that we all watch nothing but Limbaugh and Faux news!

    May 19, 2009 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  17. jagd

    is this thing on?

    May 19, 2009 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  18. lkb

    If it is all about the lies of the former administration, why not show the lies of our current political force. There is no change! Clinton lied under oath to congress and the american people. That gets brushed under the carpet and now we try to do the same with Pelosi. She knew darn well what was going on and this form of interrogation was not new when Bush came into power. It is a history of this country. Wake up dems and maybe volunteer to fight so you can get the true picture of our enemy. Al quida and the taliban are enemy combatants in a non declared conflict. Read up on the geneva convention, who signed the updated documents. Does bombing Pakistan not fall into war crimes? You cannot be rightous and fight an enemy.

    May 19, 2009 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  19. truth is liberal sort of

    ...not that i'm a partisan..

    May 19, 2009 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  20. NoPelosi

    We The People no longer believe her.

    May 19, 2009 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  21. Vic

    Mr. Hoyer, we agree with you. Leave the lady alone, already. She may be wrong in what she says, but again, she may have thought that as Speaker, she should have received a more cogent explanation.

    May 19, 2009 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  22. skyhawkdriver

    These two are a shining example of what is wrong with the government..two political hacks with fancy hairdos..manicured fingernails..taxpayer funded this and funded that..more interested in playing cover your ass than anything else..THROW THE BUMS OUT!!!

    May 20, 2009 05:40 am at 5:40 am |
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