Pelosi: 'Of course' Dems can be against abortion

Pelosi: 'Of course' Dems can be against abortion
© Greg Nash

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Sunday that a person can be part of Democratic party while being against abortion rights.

"Of course, I have served many years in Congress with members who have not shared my very positive — my family would say aggressive — position on promoting a woman's right to choose," Pelosi told host Chuck Todd on NBC’s "Meet The Press."

The issue came up after Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez and Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersDems ponder gender politics of 2020 nominee 2020 Dem contenders travel to key primary states After Florida school shooting, vows for change but no clear path forward MORE (I-Vt.) received backlash this week when they planned a rally with Heath Mello, a Democratic mayoral candidate in Omaha, Neb., who supported abortion-related ultrasound legislation eight years ago.

Sanders defended his support for Mello on Thursday, saying not all Democratic candidates will share the same views.

Perez also acknowledged a difference of views, but said Mello has since made "a promising step" for women's rights.

"I fundamentally disagree with Heath Mello’s personal beliefs about women’s reproductive health. It is a promising step that Mello now shares the Democratic Party’s position on women’s fundamental rights," Perez said in a statement Friday.

Pelosi has been the center of GOP attack ads during recent special elections in Georgia's 6th district that attempted to tie the Democratic candidate to her “liberal agenda.” 

Pelosi said the attack ads bankrupt the Republican’s “own initiatives,” and detract from what voters should know their congressman will do for them.

But Pelosi also employed a similar tactic Sunday, by tying Republican candidates in the special election to House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanRepublicans are avoiding gun talks as election looms The Hill's 12:30 Report Flake to try to force vote on DACA stopgap plan MORE (R-Wis.).

"Since you brought it up, and I'm glad you did, I think it's really important for the voters in those districts to know who the candidates will be voting with," Pelosi said in part. "Will they be voting with Paul Ryan, who wants to eliminate the guarantee of Medicare, who has voted to privatize Social Security, who's there to dismantle Medicaid?”