Maxine Waters on criticism from Schumer: Leadership will do anything to protect their power

Rep. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersHouse passes bipartisan bill to boost business investment On The Money: US files complaints at WTO | House leaders get deal to boost biz investment | Mnuchin says US will consider Iran sanctions waivers | FCC deals blow to Sinclair-Tribune merger House Judiciary Dem says it's premature to talk about Trump impeachment MORE (D-Calif.) said Sunday she was surprised to see Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerThis week: GOP mulls vote on ‘abolish ICE’ legislation Red-state Dem tells Schumer to 'kiss my you know what' on Supreme Court vote Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick MORE (D-N.Y.) criticize her for advocating publicly confronting Trump Cabinet officials, but noted that political leaders "will do anything that they think is necessary to protect their leadership.”

“You know, I was surprised that Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerThis week: GOP mulls vote on ‘abolish ICE’ legislation Red-state Dem tells Schumer to 'kiss my you know what' on Supreme Court vote Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick MORE, you know, reached into the other house to do that,” Waters said when asked by MSNBC host Joy Reid if she was surprised to see leaders in her own party criticizing her. “I’ve not quite seen that done before. But one of the things I recognize, being an elected official, is in the final analysis, you know, leadership will do anything that they think is necessary to protect their leadership.”

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Waters's statement on Sunday comes about a week after she called for protestors to confront members of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump says he doesn't want to use 'adversary' to describe Russia Comey urges Americans to vote for Democrats in midterms Roby wins Alabama GOP runoff, overcoming blowback from Trump criticism MORE's administration over his "zero tolerance" immigration policy. 

Trump responded by falsely claiming Waters called for harming his supporters. Many lawmakers, including Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiRoby wins Alabama GOP runoff, overcoming blowback from Trump criticism Mellman: (Mis)interpreting elections Overnight Health Care: Trump officials score a win against Planned Parenthood | Idaho residents to vote on Medicaid expansion | PhRMA, insurers weigh in on Trump drug pricing plan MORE (D-Calif.), condemned her remarks as well. 

But Waters said she's choosing not to focus on other lawmakers' comments. 

“I’ve got to keep the focus on the children and the fact that this administration is endangering children in the worst kind of way,” she said. 

Waters said last week that she was forced to cancel two public events because of a serious death threat she received. She then stated on Saturday at an immigration rally that anybody who attempts to hurt her "better shoot straight." 

“I know that there are those who are talking about censuring me, talking about kicking me out of Congress, talking about shooting me, talking about hanging me,” Waters told the crowd in Los Angeles. “All I have to say is this: If you shoot me you better shoot straight. There’s nothing like a wounded animal."