House

Liz Cheney calls Ayanna Pressley’s comments at Netroots Nation ‘racist’

House Republican Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) accused Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) on Tuesday of making “racist” remarks at a weekend event.

Speaking about Pressley’s statement at Netroots Nation that the Democratic Party did not need “any more black faces that don’t want to be a black voice,” Cheney argued it was “racist” to say that one’s voice is “only legitimate” if the person “espouses some preapproved set of beliefs.”

{mosads}”Our colleagues are wrong when they tell Americans, as Congresswoman Pressley did just last weekend, that any individual seat at the table is only valuable, only legitimate if that person espouses some preapproved set of beliefs deemed appropriate based on their religion or their gender or their race,” Cheney told reporters.

“When they say that, that is racist,” she continued.

“Congresswoman Pressley strongly believes that representation matters,” her office responded in an email to The Hill.

“She has frequently stated that a diversity in thought and opinion leads to more innovative and enduring solutions. Without black voices or queer voices or Muslim voices or survivor voices or the like, we cannot achieve diversity in policy,” added spokesperson Kalina Francis.

Pressley told the audience at the left-leaning Netroots Nation conference on Saturday that she was not interested in bringing “a chair to an old table,” meaning that “diversity at the table doesn’t matter if there’s not real diversity in policy,” according to a spokeswoman.

“This is the time to shake that table. … We don’t need any more brown faces that don’t want to be a brown voice,” the freshman congresswoman said Saturday. “We don’t need any more black faces that don’t want to be a black voice.”

Pressley’s comments followed a week of back-and-forth in the press and on social media between several freshman House Democrats, including Pressley and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), and more senior members of the House Democratic Caucus led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Pressley was also one of the four freshman Democratic women of color who were the subject of a series of tweets from President Trump over the weekend telling them to “go back” to their home countries. 

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Ayanna Pressley Donald Trump Liz Cheney Nancy Pelosi

The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.

Most Popular

Load more

Video

See all Video