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Jon Stewart Confronts Pelosi On Money In Politics, Delivers Best Interview In Recent Memory

Last night, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi went on The Daily Show for an interview with Jon Stewart. Rep. Pelosi appeared surprised and visibly uncomfortable when repeatedly confronted with hard-hitting questions on the undeniable effects of special interest money and corruption on our government.

It’s incredibly rare to see such a high ranking politician held to account for their fundraising activity. This interview is an absolute must-watch — The relevant segment starts at 2:53 in Part 2 and continues into Part 3.

Part 2 (skip to 2:53)

 

Part 3

Rep. Pelosi’s interview embodies exactly what is wrong with our current system of government. She talks big, calling Citizens United a “travesty of justice” and extolling her support for an easy to remember acronym. But instead of acknowledging how corrupt our system has become, Rep. Pelosi insists on characterizing a government-wide issue as the product of the opposing party, and refuses to see herself or her colleagues as part of the problem.

Corruption is the single most important issue facing our nation, and should not be reduced to a cheap applause line or partisan talking point. Corruption has no party affiliation — using the influence of money as a way to play one party against the other is a surefire way to permanently stall substantive reform.

We, the People, understand that our system is broken. If our leaders can’t recognize the urgent need to come together as one nation and fix it, we’ll elect new ones who will.

  • Max Johnson

    The Steaming Pile of Pelosi. Typical, avoid the real answer.

    • Andrea Nash

      All he had to ask her about was Monsanto/big pharma are embedded in this administration for the reason? Just tell us Pelosi why big pharma is not held accountable for damages done by vaccinations? Why are they exempt from liability?

      Nancy Pelosi’s husband was awarded a contract with congressional oversight so they are telling us there is no foul play. I’m sure you know that as long as Mrs. Pelosi recused herself from the recommendation for bidding ( but we know how you scratch my back and I will scratch yours goes) she stands not even to be censured for conflict of interest. We all know that this goes on in Washington each and every day, they make millions upon millions of dollars, padding their wallets, and we are suppose to look the other way. We know it is corrupt, and she does as well.

      WASHINGTON TIMES RAN AN ARTICLE: “House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s husband, a real estate developer and investment banker, stands to make millions of dollars in a previously undisclosed residential real estate project in California as a partner with the father of a woman Mrs. Pelosi helped become ambassador to Hungary, records show.
      Paul F. Pelosi’s investment in Russell Ranch is worth at least $5 million and possibly as much as $25 million in a deal put together by his friend and longtime business associate, Angelo Tsakopoulos, patriarch of a multimillion-dollar real estate development firm, according to Mrs. Pelosi’s latest personal-disclosure statement.

      Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/oct/10/pelosis-disclosure-belated-in-husbands-land-deal/#ixzz2s0oAgOWU
      Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

      • James RePass

        I hate Pelosi and Monsanto but let’s be clear, there is ZERO, ZERO scientific evidence linking vaccines to autism, whcih is what I assume you are referring to.

        • hdam

          Why would you assume that? Andrea said nothing about autism or about vaccines. You do realize there are other problems with big farm besides the vaccine/autism debacle. Lets not jump the gun next time and sound like an over zealous crusader on an unrelated topic.

          • Trent

            big phama*

        • Rich Purtell

          There are billons of dollars of damages paid out per year due to damages from vaccines. There is too much secrecy about it. We put the benefits of vaccines in big neon lights and then suppress the risks. Not good business. Full transparency of risk/reward is what is needed. We are over-vaccinated, and I do think when medicine is advanced(medicine is a very immature field of science) we will find our hyper-sanitized mindset is contributing to the marked increase in auto-immune diseases. Should kids get no vaccines? No. But is there no end to how many makes sense? Fifty? One hundred? One thousand? We are tampering with systems in the human body that we do not fully understand.

          • James RePass

            The reason they are in ‘neon lights’ is because they so far outweigh the risks. Period. And, to boot, science backs that up, as it’s been shown that not vaccinating your kids is a risk to our herd immunity (google it, not bothering to explain it), so not only are you incredibly stupid if you don’t vaccinate your kids, but you’re also being an asshole to everyone else’s kids in the long run.

          • Rich Purtell

            James we vaccinate kids for illnesses with very little consequences. At what point do we stop? And we don’t even understand all of the risks yet. Autism is a stretch I agree but there is mounting evidence that the Hep B vaccine is a driver towards MS. I know all about herd immunity concepts. Come on medical science is still very immature, just look at how many illnesses we cannot treat with any effectiveness. I don’t like to see the “all or nothing” mandates. In New York state you can’t send your kids to public school without the full barrage of 67 vaccines. Sixty-seven! It is getting a bit ridiculous.

  • Chris889

    Best interview I’ve seen in a long time

  • Jack Wall

    Lawrence Lessig (Republic, Lost) makes the same argument about corruption – that the people in Congress are just good guys doing the best they can. I have to agree with Stewart: there’s no way these guys don’t know they are being bought and no way their votes are not being influenced by money. If Pelosi and other progressives don’t recognize this fact, we are in big trouble. These are not good guys working for America, folks; these are corrupt politicians lining their pockets and caring little about the public or about what is good for America! And that includes the so-called Justices that now sit on our Supreme Court. As long as they are protected from being held accountable for their corporate-based decisions, politicians and justices alike will continue supporting the corruption. And one spin-off rant: why the hell must we get our best news from comedians like Jon Stewart? This interview is one of the best pieces of news and journalism that I have seen in a long time! He holds Pelosi’s feet to the fire! Good work, Jon! Wish we could get more of this type of stuff from those corrupt politicians doing the most damage.

    • Gabriel D Kruger

      I agree with most of what you said, except for the Justices. The point of the judicial branch and specifically the Supreme Court has nothing to do with the will of the people. It has to do with the constitutionality of an issue, which may or may not be a poplar with the ‘people’. Read your Federalist Papers, one of the things are founding fathers were afraid of was a tyranny of the majority.

    • Erik

      Jack, i could not agree more with you regarding the fact that our comedians have become the truest source for real news and informed content. Perhaps in a hundred years or so we will look back on Stewart and Colbert as our Madison. Great thinkers and great communicators for our generation.

  • Andrea Nash

    All he had to ask her about was Monsanto/big pharma are embedded in this administration for the reason?

  • janieliza

    Pelosi was taped asking a company for a contribution. She SHOULD be sensitive to the issue. Do you think she is going to let you or Jon call her corrupt? She thinks it is business as usual. It is not, but that is how we need to reeducate folks in Congress in either party. There is still a major gulf between asking a company for a donation and going along with a pay for play scheme with the Koch Kraven Klan. The Tea Party is a bought group of representatives and NOTHING can make them anything but corrupt.

    • Max Johnson

      Your uninformed.

      • Bgirv

        Please provide more of an argument than “your uninformed”. There are financial documents that link the founding of the tea party to the Koch brothers. At least janieliza is fair enough to say that both parties need to be reeducated. And kudos to Jon Stewart for holding a Democrats feet to the fire, I challenge anyone to show me an interview from MSNBC or FOX News that challenges a sitting member of Congress from their ideological party as much as he does. It’s just a shame it has to come from Comedy Central.

        • Max Johnson

          Cite your “financial documents.”

          • Bgirv

            Uh oh, you replied to me… I was hoping you wouldn’t call me out! What am I going to do now?! Simple, I will provide sources and wait for your response.

            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brendan-demelle/study-confirms-tea-party-_b_2663125.html

            http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/opinion/29rich.html

            http://www.nationaljournal.com/politics/david-koch-seeded-major-tea-party-group-private-donor-list-reveals-20130924

            B..b..but that’s obviously liberal talking points, it’s from Huff Po and the New York Times! Just because you do not like the source does not mean the facts are wrong.

          • Max Johnson

            I look
            forward to our civil discussion. Please tell me you are not being a
            smart ass. At this moment I am too busy working but will follow with a
            reply. Thank you.

          • Bgirv

            I am more than willing to engage in civil discussion. I was being a borderline smart ass because I looked thru your comment history and noticed a lot of snark. I wish there was more honest engagement but the internet wasn’t made for that. My POV so you can reply in rebuttal: most politicians have been bought and paid for by corporations/special interests. They got into politics with the best intentions but once in D.C. they got swallowed by the system and now enjoy that life too much. They are trapped in bubbles and do not understand the plight of the middle/working class anymore. The fact that congress has a 15% approval rate and yet a 90% reelection rate blows my mind. The first step that needs to be taken is reform financial/election laws, establish term limits, and bipartisan commissions draw election districts; no more districts drawn by whatever party happens to be running the state gov and legislature. It’s just a shame that this will never be embraced by either side because there is no money to be made in it. I lean more liberal in ideology but feel that there are major problems in government as a whole and to criticize one party is unfair.

    • Trent

      Did you not listen? That is the issue across the whole spectrum. As long as people point fingers at a few selected groups then we will not see change in the right direction. Pelosi, democrats, republicans, etc. have been caught with their hands in the cookie jar before and they will continue to do so.

      • Howard

        You just don’t get it ! Stop attacking the players and instead change the GAME. The game is money and I don’t blame a single of of these politicians for playing the game – if they didn’t they would be back home and unknown.

        Change the GAME and the players will play the NEW game.

        • Trent

          Exaclty. Stop letting it be a conquer and divide strategy and objectively look at the goals that both parties set out and what they have achieved.

          Maybe you don’t blame them, but I certainly do. Doing what is right is important.

          • Howard

            But Trent. What choices do people who want to work in politics have ? If they go into the system there is only ONE path – raise money and sell their soul. Most probably think they can cheat and get good stuff done on the side. If they don’t go into politics what has there ben to do ? The American people have shown NO interest in any kind of third way for 50 years, and have been totally apathetic about the money in the system.
            I am not saying we should give them medals. I am just saying we should not waste time and media coverage vilifying the existing players, and get on with the task of getting the money out. It needs direct political action; it needs champions in the House and Senate; it needs a constitutional amendment.

  • evilroyslade

    Term limits and Line Item Veto’s. IMO

  • Larry Garfield

    The worst part? It takes a comedian to challenge politicians on the hard, core questions. How far we’ve fallen.

    • Chris889

      You know… that is very scary.

    • Carolina

      Thank God they exist. They’re all we have now people.

    • Ben Ellis

      I think that says volumes about how important comedians are in our society as commentators and facilitators of social, political, and cultural discourse. Of course, not all comedians.

    • Sean R.

      A comedian who she considered on “her side” is the only one she allowed to get this close to her without pre-scripted questions. I doubt she’ll let that happen again.

  • Frau Blücher

    Pelosi! So hard to listen to her rambling nonsense.

  • reciprocalhokie

    Pelosi is so full of shit. And I’m a Democrat.

    • No Body

      leave that party. don’t look back.

  • Carolina

    Green has no party. Thank you Johnny.

  • John Miklos

    “We are the party of Green”

    No, Lady Speaker, that would be the Green Party. Your ‘green’ is the corporate cash lining pockets on both sides of the aisles.

  • Joshua Dunn

    I think what bugged me most is that she doesn’t even listen.. she just wants to speak.

  • http://www.johnperryonline.com/ John Perry

    Nancy Pelosi is one of the biggest f-ing phonies to ever set foot inside the Beltway. This is the same woman who said they have to pass bills to see what’s in them… The same woman who, while serving as speaker of the house, disingenuously blamed republicans for not allowing a vote to end the Iraq war, when she could have ended it herself by simply refusing to bring any war funding bill to the floor for a vote… The same woman who claimed she had seen no evidence of impeachable offenses by the Bush administration, after Dennis Kucinich spent several hours reading 35 fully detailed and documented articles of impeachment into the record on the floor of the House that she was serving as Speaker.

    The “differences” between democrats and republicans are all part of the carefully crafted grand charade that’s designed to keep the masses divided, and the charade will continue for as long as people continue to vote for either “side.” They are one party, wholly owned by special interest pimps, that is playing America like a fiddle.

  • Rich Purtell

    Comedians today (guys like Jon and George Carlin anyway) are like the philosophers in Roman times.

  • Paul Allen

    This pretty much shows the issue of corruption for what it really is and why this is not going to be easy. No one from either side wants to really do something about it. They just want to change the subject and keep us arguing about something else.

  • Howard

    It’s a meaningless exercise to judge Pelosi in isolation and engage in a w@nk fest that achieves nothing.

    Pelosi is a SYMPTOM of the system that is put into place by the Constitution, the failure of the People to engage with Politics over the last 50 years, the failure by the People to bring the Constitution up to date due to treating it like the Tablets of Stone handed down by the hand of god ! It is NOT. It is a deeply flawed document that was grand hundreds of years ago but not for the 21st century !

    The Constitution needs to be changed and Corporate and Special Interest money needs to be removed from Politics, so that politicians are no longer bought and sold. There are many many many people in politics who would make marvellous and effective leaders if they were freed from the shackles and corruption of this tidal wave of money – on both sides.

  • Spencer Mead

    Whenever I listen to politicians these days, all I can think is how many buzz words they throw out every day..

  • Dave Osborne

    It’s certainly a good goal to get money out of politics, and certainly bad that congressional reps have to spend 4-5 hours a day on fundraising in order to build the war chest required to keep winning their elections (at 3:27). But notice that immediately after that’s mentioned, Jon points out that Pelosi raised $30M last year. Folks, the average bi-annual congressional race costs $1.7M, and so that would mean Pelosi is raising roughly $60M for every re-election run as compared to the average required of $1.7M. What people need to understand is that those ‘extra’ funds raised are used to buy influence in the party and among their peers, and is essentially how some of the congressional leaders ‘buy’ their leadership positions. So there are really two problems caused by lack of campaign finance reform; first that it helps candidates buy their way into both primaries and general elections, but second that it helps some buy their way into leadership. It’s currently ALL about the money, and we won’t see leaders or members on either side start to care about the every one’s needs until the money is minimized in the system.

  • hegesias

    The corporate Dems will try to “reform” money in politics to make it work better for them and will effectually prevent us from getting money out of politics in the same way the Obamacare prevents us from getting to single-payer and $10.10 in 2017 prevents us from getting a fair, living wage for all workers. These are crumbs from our corporate overlords served to us by their politicians as if they were wedding cake.

  • JCPhotoMedia.com

    get lobbyists out of democracy all together. In any other situation what happens with “lobbyists” would be called bribery. A felony. We have an FCC that could mandate that TV stations give an equal amount of airtime to all of those that want to run. Candidates should run on an even and unpaid for platform. Only when that is done will we ever have any hope of recapturing democracy and eliminating what has become an oligarchy. The system as it stands consists of big money donors giving money so that the candidates can put on a show to be elected by the majority (kinda almost looks like democracy in that little part) but the then the candidate is owned by the big money donors so that 2,4, or 6 years later they can get the coffers refueled and they can put on the show again. A true democracy would instead give equal footing to all qualified candidates who without owing anything to any donor could actually fulfill their obligations to the majority that elected them…imagine that

  • carlyle_ny

    She is SO dizzy … and by the way, Nancy, now that you mention global warming, what’s YOUR carbon footprint? And what are you doing to limit the population of the United States, which cannot maintain current immigration levels without destroying the environment you claim to care so much about? Eh, Nancy? Mmm?