Rep. Pramila Jayapal and Sen. Jeff Merkley blamed Democratic leadership for the $4.6 billion humanitarian aid package Congress passed last week that was bitterly opposed by many progressive Democrats.
Jayapal and Merkley, who spoke at the annual Netroots Nation conference on Friday, agreed that House and Senate Democrats didn’t communicate effectively about their plans for the legislation, which they hoped would include stronger protections for migrants.
Jayapal also responded to a recent rift between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and several progressive freshmen lawmakers, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
“I’ve never felt disrespected as a woman of color by Nancy Pelosi,” Jayapal said, responding to Ocasio-Cortez’s claim that Pelosi had singled out freshmen women of color.
Thousands of progressive activists are gathered in Philadelphia for the conference, which will feature a discussion with a handful of 2020 presidential candidates on Saturday.
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PHILADELPHIA — Rep. Pramila Jayapal and Sen. Jeff Merkley, both progressive Democrats, blamed Democratic leadership for the passage of a humanitarian aid package for the US southern border that many Democrats believe doesn’t contain strong enough protections for migrants.
Jayapal and Merkley spoke on Friday afternoon at Netroots Nation, the country’s largest gathering of progressive activists.
Merkley blamed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for giving into Republicans and moderate Democrats for deciding not to allow Democrats to conference on the aid package last week. He said that Senate Democrats were under the impression that it would go to conference — a chance to hash out differences between House and Senate bills — rather than the House voting on the Senate version of the bill.
“The complete assumption on the Senate side was that Speaker Pelosi would take it to conference, and she didn’t,” Merkley said, calling the outcome “horrendous.”
The House ultimately passed the bipartisan legislation without the …read more
Source:: Business Insider