With the Export-Import Bank future still in doubt, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Thursday Democrats would sign on to a Republican-led discharge petition for the embattled export-credit agency.
Pelosi, speaking at her weekly on-camera news conference, said Democrats would support the discharge petition from Tennessee Republican Stephen Fincher for the Ex-Im Bank, as long as Fincher collected enough signatures from Republicans first so that, with the addition of the Democratic Caucus, it would trigger a vote.
Fincher introduced the discharge petition Thursday morning, and while finding enough Republicans willing to force their leadership into the position of holding a vote could be a challenge, it will certainly help to know that Democrats will sign on.
Of course, the issue may be moot if Speaker John A. Boehner takes care of the Export-Import Bank in his so-called barn-cleaning efforts before his resignation takes effect at the end of October. Boehner said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation" he didn't want to leave his successor with a dirty barn. Many have believed items such as Ex-Im, a highway bill and the debt limit could all be targets for Boehner.
Pelosi Chastises Reporter Over Abortion Question
Things also got heated during Pelosi's meeting with the press Thursday, when a reporter asked the California Democrat whether "an unborn baby with a human heart and a human liver" was a human being.
"Why don't you take your ideological questions, I don't have — " Pelosi said, as the reporter cut her off to ask, "If it's not a human being, what species is it?"
"Listen: I want to say something to you. I don't know who you are," Pelosi said to the reporter. "And you're welcome to be here — freedom of this press. I am a devout, practicing Catholic. A mother of five children. When my baby was born, my fifth child, my oldest child, was six years old. I think I know more about this subject than you, with all due respect."
When the reporter began to interrupt her again to seek clarification — "so it's not a human being?" — Pelosi cut him off to say she did not "intend to respond to your questions which have no basis in what public policy is that we do here."
Pelosi also said during the news conference that, if President Barack Obama vetoes the defense authorization bill , then Democrats would sustain that veto.
Pelosi: Democrats Will Sign Ex-Im Discharge Petition
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