Pelosi says she worried Trump would have contested elections if House margin had been thin

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump says Democrats are handing out subpoenas 'like they're cookies' Trump says Democrats are handing out subpoenas 'like they're cookies' Overnight Defense: House passes T spending package with defense funds | Senate set to vote on blocking Saudi arms sales | UN nominee defends climate change record MORE (D-Calif.) said in a new interview that she worried in 2018 whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpBooker hits Biden's defense of remarks about segregationist senators: 'He's better than this' Booker hits Biden's defense of remarks about segregationist senators: 'He's better than this' Trump says Democrats are handing out subpoenas 'like they're cookies' MORE would contest the election of some House Democrats if her party had taken control of the chamber by just a few seats.

In an interview with The New York Times, Pelosi recalled how she feared the results of a close midterm election would provoke Trump into attempting foul play to protect his GOP majority in the lower chamber.

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“If we win by four seats, by a thousand votes each, he’s not going to respect the election,” she said, remembering her thinking during the 2018 election,

“He would poison the public mind. He would challenge each of the races; he would say you can’t seat these people,” the Speaker continued, according to the Times. “We had to win. Imagine if we hadn’t won — oh, don’t even imagine. So, as we go forward, we have to have the same approach.”

Pelosi told the Times she worries the same could occur in 2020 if Democrats are unable to defeat Trump at the ballot box by a wide margin.

“We have to inoculate against that, we have to be prepared for that,” she reportedly said.

Pelosi has positioned the 2020 election as a major test for Democrats, and has claimed that the U.S. rule of law is at stake in next November's elections. Despite calls from Democrats for her to support efforts in the House to bring impeachment proceedings against the president, the Speaker has remained firm that Trump should be defeated by voters.

"Everything is at stake in this election. The Constitution of the United States, which the president is trying to usurp; the power of the legislative branch of government; the environment in which we live," she said during a CNN interview last month.