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Pelosi on AOC: ‘We Don’t Have That Many Differences’

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi addresses guests at an event hosted by the Economic Club of Washington in Washington, D.C., March 8, 2019. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

House speaker Nancy Pelosi downplayed her differences with progressive freshman congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez after a private meeting Friday.

“It went very well,” Pelosi said. “I don’t think we have that many differences.”

Pelosi said they did not discuss Ocasio-Cortez’s recent remark suggesting the speaker was singling out female colleagues of color for criticism.

“I have meetings with members all the time,” Pelosi told reporters. “We covered a range of issues in our conversation particular to the congresswoman’s committees.”

The apparently amicable meeting comes after a tiff earlier this month between Pelosi and Representatives Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and Ayanna Pressley, the four progressive first-term congresswomen of color nicknamed “the Squad.” The dispute started after the four voted against an emergency border-aid bill brought to the floor by leadership, saying they wanted to see more protections for migrants in the measure.

“All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world,” Pelosi said after the bill passed. “But they didn’t have any following. They’re four people, and that’s how many votes they got.”

Ocasio-Cortez then took issue with Pelosi’s minimizing the influence of the four representatives.

“It got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful,” she said. “The explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”

Pelosi later reprimanded the Democratic caucus and included a not-so-subtle message to the four congresswomen.

“You got a complaint? You come and talk to me about it,” Pelosi said during a closed-door meeting with Democrats after the internal dissension spilled into the public eye. “But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just OK.”

The four freshmen and Pelosi later united to rebuke President Trump after he attacked the Squad, telling them to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” Pelosi personally introduced the resolution that passed the House condemning the president’s remarks as racist.

“We’re good, we’re good,” Pelosi said Thursday about her relationship with Ocasio-Cortez. “I don’t think there are tensions.”

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