May 22nd, 2009
01:00 PM ET
13 years ago

Pelosi refuses to answer questions

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/05/21/art.pelosi.gi.jpg caption="Nancy Pelosi is no longer discussing her charge that the CIA misled Congress."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to answer questions Friday about her stinging accusation last week that the CIA misled her about the use of waterboarding and Republican demands that she provide evidence.

"I have made the statement that I'm going to make on this. I don't have anything more to say about it," she pointedly told reporters. "I stand by my comment and - and what we are doing is staying on our course, and not be distracted from it."

The speaker changed the format of her weekly press conference Friday. Instead of appearing solo, Pelosi brought in three of her Democratic leadership colleagues. After the leaders gave 25 minutes of statements about their legislative accomplishments, Pelosi took just 5 minutes of questions from reporters, and only answered one about the back-and-forth over enhanced interrogation methods.

Despite repeated efforts by reporters to follow up on the issue, Pelosi dismissed them, saying, "I won't have anything more to say about it."

Pelosi may be ready to turn the page, but Republicans clearly aren't. Just minutes after the press conference, Ken Spain, spokesman for the National Republican Campaign Committee sent out a statement blasting her performance. "Speaker Pelosi stammered and filibustered around the elephant in the room because she knows full well that she has become a political liability to her fellow Democrats in Congress," he said.

"Her obsession with the previous administration and her disdain for America's intelligence officials has reduced her to cheerleader status within the far left wing of her party and a distraction to the substantive debate over how to best move our economy forward."

Updated at 1:00 p.m. with additional on-the-scene details.


Filed under: CIA • Nancy Pelosi
soundoff (212 Responses)
  1. BandV

    wow, can't believe i actually found this on cnn! i'm gonna wait for the documentary only her daughter is allowed to do to before further slamming this oxygen thief. i wonder if idiocy is a side effect of botox? current speaker of the house, 3d in line for the presidency....shudder. i wish the reporters in there would have had the courage to continue to pressure her..would have loved to see her blow up.

    May 22, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  2. No Vaseline

    Yo, ReTHUGs! Get off of Pelosi's back and start investigating small-dick cheney, he approved this BS

    May 22, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  3. Lou

    She's a disgusting disgrace for the Democratic party, needs to be removed from ANY position of leadership in this country. This is NOT THE FIRST time she's done something like this...the ISSUE is she's a LIAR! It's truly disgusting, really.

    May 22, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  4. bess

    she took the cowards way out of that Q&A. maybe too much plastic surgery and botox have finally affected her brain.

    May 22, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  5. barry in las vegas

    Why didn't this compliant group of supposed journalists ask Pelosi why she felt it necessary to bring a bunch of people to the press conference to hide behind? She is pathetic ans so is the MSM who just folded when she said she wouldn't answer questions about the CIA.

    May 22, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  6. Daniel

    It's Bush's fault!!!

    May 22, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  7. AJB

    Good for her! Stick to the issues at hand. If the republicans want inverstigations, let's start with one that would really matter – investigate the bush admin and their merry band of war criminals and schlock lawyers.

    May 22, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  8. barking republican ankle biters

    Lets have Cheney get the Benito Mussolini treatment,In the public square.

    May 22, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  9. Republican for the Good of the US

    Liberals are always bringing it back to Bush/Cheney. You know what?! Get over it! We were protected for 8 years at a time when the world was in dissaray. When people wanted to bomb our whole country into the heavens. I have no idea what the complaints are about, however whenever something goes wrong with your democratic party (a party that would rather save a tree then an American), you always complain about Bush/Cheney. Pelosi was wrong, that's the bottom line, now fess up to it.

    May 22, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  10. RNC = DNC = politics as usual

    @Laura "All that Botox ..."

    Surprising to see a woman making a sexist comment. Thank for stepping women's issues back in time.

    What exactly does a woman's appearance have to do with her political choices and opinions?

    May 22, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  11. j

    Asked and answered.

    May 22, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  12. BD

    For all those who are saying "Torture is the real issue", you're exactly right. And because Nancy Pelosi was in a position to stop these techniques when they were initiated, she is as much responsible for them being used as Bush/Cheney. THAT'S at the cruxt of this arguement of her "being lied to". So if you find coersing 3 terrorists into confessing plans to further harm this nation to be objectionable, be as angry at Pelosi as you are at Bush & Cheney. It's only rational!

    May 22, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  13. Nini

    She can refuse all she wants what I like to know is where the reporters with back bone to stop her and make her answer the question?

    If we are not getting answers from Pelosi is because of the incompetent press core that are sitting there.

    What happened to the concept called follow-up questions?

    May 22, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  14. Jon

    I'm a lifelong Democrat and support most of Pelosi's agenda, but even I think she's gone over the edge here. I've always seen her as a partisan and polarizing figure who spends as much time on intra-party squabbling as she does fighting for her constituents. If it can be proven that she lied about this CIA thing she should resign her leadership post, and the voters of California should think seriously about a new candidate for her seat.

    May 22, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  15. Shane

    Why isn't this on the main page of your website? If Pelosi was bashing Bush, it would be.

    May 22, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  16. Jake

    lets have Cheney, Rove, Bush, Rumsfeld, Rice and Co answer questions first....then you can go after Pelosi!

    May 22, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  17. Jake

    my only grudge against her is she didn't go after impeaching BUSH!

    May 22, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  18. Todd

    What a moron! This is THE BEST that you Libs have to offer – after the messy-uh??? Couple more months of the hatred she spews and the Republicans won't even have to say a word to make you Libs look bad .. not that they really have to now!

    May 22, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  19. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    I am underwhelmed by Pelosi. Time for her to retire. The job is too much for her.

    May 22, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  20. Vigla

    This is dumb. It's a classic case of he said she said... No one knows the truth. How about we move on? Shall we? I agree it was dumb for her to bring it up.

    Besides, we all know who really did lie. GWB and his buddy Dick. (on Iraq, torture) Those lies cost American lives. Her assertion clearly did not. REALITY CHECK PLEASE!

    May 22, 2009 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  21. karen

    Republicans are in their death throes still trying to fabricate issues, like Pelosi's comments about her CIA briefings and torture.

    May 22, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  22. Old Coach

    TO: "Truth Hurts"

    I read your interesting comments! You MUST live in a pain-free world, since you certainly do not begin to understand the truth.

    May 22, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  23. Dems are Hypocrites

    Of course she did , she is a LIAR and a TRAITOR to this country. If she lived during Lincolns day she would have been shot for Treason.

    May 22, 2009 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  24. Longhorn7

    Step down Pelosi. You were nothing before they made you Speaker and your nothing now. Move the heck out of the way so someone can get something done. I'm sick of looking at you. And this is from a LIBERAL.

    May 22, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
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