By Alicia M. Cohn - 10/03/11 06:34 PM EDT
Pelosi said she has told Democrats heading into deficit-reduction negotiations on the new congressional supercommittee to keep in mind "the fact that 15 percent of American people live in poverty" as they seek to reach a deal by Thanksgiving.
She also responded to “one of the candidates for president who shall remain nameless,” quoting former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who said this summer while campaigning in Iowa that “corporations are people, too.”
“We reward success. I’ve got these pearl earrings,” she joked. “God bless [corporations] for their success, God bless the shareholders who participate in that success. But let’s not forget the workers who contributed to that success. And as long as productivity and wages continue to go like that — productivity up, wages not rising in any relation to productivity — we’re going to have an erosion of the middle class. We’re going to have people slipping down from it. Most people in the country, no matter how poor they are, believe they are in the middle class, and that’s where they want to be, and we have to honor that aspiration.”
Romney has charged that the president's policies have hurt the middle “80 to 90 percent” of taxpayers, and pledged his prospective presidential policies would help strengthen it. The prospective White House candidate, who proposes cutting the corporate tax rate, stood firm on his comment regarding corporations, dismissing Obama’s “1960s ‘We don't like companies’ shtick.”
Pelosi quoted billionaire Warren Buffett, who has lately become the face of big business support for Democrats. “Actually, there’s been class warfare going on for the last 20 years, and my class has won. We’re the ones that have gotten our tax rates reduced dramatically,” Buffett said last week on CNN.