House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) tore into fellow Democrats for voting with the GOP on procedural votes during an emotional closed-door session Thursday.
Politico reported that Pelosi warned moderate members of the caucus that they could lose financial support from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee if they kept voting with the opposite side of the aisle.
The move came after an embarrassing moment in which Republicans tacked onto a universal background check for firearm purchases bill an amendment that would send Immigration and Customs Enforcement updates when undocumented immigrants buy guns.
Twenty-six Democrats voted with the GOP on the amendment and it passed with the ICE language, “spoiling an important Democratic legislative achievement,” Politico reported.
“An earlier GOP motion condemning anti-Semitism was successfully attached to a House resolution barring U.S. involvement in the Yemeni civil war,” the report added. “That maneuver, which was backed by every Democrat, later caused parliamentary problems in the Senate and upended Democratic attempts to challenge President Donald Trump’s foreign policy.”
Pelosi chided the caucus Thursday after the upsets, telling them: “This is not a day at the beach. This is the Congress of the United States.”
In addition to the House Speaker’s warnings, headline-grabbing freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) also suggested that she’d inform progressive activists when moderate Democrats vote with the GOP.
With her warnings, Pelosi came up against House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC), her longtime allies who believe “moderate members can vote with Republicans if they think it will improve their political standing,” the report noted.