Incoming speaker Nancy Pelosi wants to be clear about what the new Democratic House majority will not be: They will not, she insists, act like the Republicans.
“We believe that we will not become them,” she said in a New Year’s Day phone interview during a visit to her native Baltimore. “We’re not going to do to them what they did to President Obama. . . . It’s really important for us not to become them and certainly not to become like the president of the United States in terms of how he speaks without any basis of fact, evidence, data or truth.
“We will respect each other’s opinions, and respect the truth.” Note: She said this before President Trump’s series of false claims in advance of his Wednesday meeting with congressional leaders about the government shutdown he precipitated in pursuit of his border wall.
Pelosi also pushed back hard against the idea that, in holding Trump and his administration accountable, Democrats would be engaging in some sort of investigative orgy. On the contrary, she said, Article I of the Constitution grants Congress responsibility for “oversight over the agencies of government.”
She added pointedly: “We don’t want the administration describing the traditional congressional responsibility for oversight to be labeled ‘investigation.’ There may be some investigations that spring from another purpose, but we will be strategic and not political when it comes to that.” She senses no need to explain or elaborate on the meaning of the words “another purpose,” even though they represent a potentially mortal threat to Trump’s presidency.