Nov 3, 2020
Nancy Pelosi Election Night Speech Transcript After Democrats Retain Control of House
Nancy Pelosi gave a speech on the night of the 2020 election after Democrats were projected to retain control of the House of Representatives. Read the full transcript of her speech here.
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Nancy Pelosi: (00:01)
I can see you, but you couldn’t see me. Thank you for joining us. I know that transportation is always challenging in this time of coronavirus. But thank you for joining us virtually here this evening, so that I can praise you for retaining our House Democratic majority. Under your leadership, Madam Chair, we have held the House. And now when all the votes are counted, we’ll see how much better we will do than that.
Nancy Pelosi: (00:30)
We are in a situation where some of the states have just said, “We’re not counting anymore until tomorrow morning,” and of course the west coast has not chimed in yet. There’s more to come. Our race this time was all about healthcare. This was vote your health. We had that in the last election. Our for the people agenda was we’re going to lower healthcare costs by lowering the cost of prescription drugs, preserving preexisting conditions. It became the issue of the 2018 election under the leadership of the policy committee that Congress … or the Madam Chair was a co-chair of then. Carrying that message into this election because it is of concern to the American people. It is amplified by the coronavirus.
Nancy Pelosi: (01:24)
Our purpose in this race was to win so that we could protect the Affordable Care Act, and that we could crush the virus. That we could stop the spread of it. That we could reward our workers who risked their lives to save lives, and now might be losing their jobs, and that we can put money in the pockets of the American people. I’m very, very proud of the fact that tonight … relatively early, we’re able to say that we have held the House. It is something quite spectacular, because the people who helped us win were the people who have been affected by it. Thousands of those who have been diagnosed, or members of their family diagnosed with a preexisting condition have spoken out. Have told their stories. And that was the most compelling argument of all.
Nancy Pelosi: (02:20)
Again, that was our purpose. We have succeeded in that. Now, we have to win the White House and we’re well on our way to doing that. But again, we’re speaking to our friends in Virginia … over 2 million votes have not been counted in Virginia yet. We’re waiting to see what that brings and what that means for the Presidential Race. But I’m here just to sing the praises of our House Democrats and our candidates. Not just in terms of numbers. It’s not just about the quantity. It’s about the quality of leadership that they provide for our country. It’s about the fact that they are there in the Congress.
Nancy Pelosi: (03:02)
We’re all there for the people. And to have a strategic plan, to be successful, to retain our control … to hold the House actually is how we say it. We couldn’t be better served than by our Chair, Cheri Bustos. In all of the pillars of winning an election whether it was the mobilization, the grassroots level, even virtually, she has succeeded. Whether it’s about messaging in a very disciplined way, she has succeeded. In about amassing the financial resources, the money, the third [inaudible 00:00:03:38], she has broken all records. And through it all, she retained and commanded the respect of the House members and the competence of all of our candidates. With that, I want to acknowledge, again, Chair Cheri Bustos of Illinois. Madam Chair, I yield to you and with an honor. Thank you.
Cheri Bustos: (04:02)
All right. Speaker Pelosi, thank you so much for your kind words and obviously your leadership of this caucus. You’ve been absolutely amazing. I’m joining you tonight from Moline, Illinois, which is my hometown. Moline is kind of the center of America. People here, they take that literally, and they work hard and look after each other. It’s around places like this that if your neighbor falls ill, you offer to bring over a meal to them or you offer to look after their kids.
Cheri Bustos: (04:34)
It was in 2018 that Democrats won back the House by reaching out to people in towns like Moline. By listening to them. Here’s what people in those towns, the center of America, told us what we took into the 2020 elections. And that’s that they want a government that works for them. They want more progress and less partisanship. They want an end to corruption in the power of special interests. And they want healthcare. Period. They want to stop worrying about it. They want to know that their families are covered. And they know in their hearts what Democrats have kept pointing out. Every time Republicans have had the opportunity to strip away the healthcare protections of hardworking Americans, Republicans have done that. That is a fact.
Cheri Bustos: (05:25)
No matter whether you’re a mom suffering through cancer, a dad who survived a heart attack, a young kid struggling with asthma, Republicans will not rest until they rip away the protections that ensure you can still afford your healthcare. We have never stopped talking about healthcare. And now with polls closed across the continental U.S., we can protect what the American people have once again determined that they need us to protect, especially in the middle of pandemic. They want the party of healthcare to represent them. The Democratic party. That’s their firewall against the recklessness of Washington Republicans.
Cheri Bustos: (06:08)
And it’s an awesome responsibility. But the American people have put the right party in charge of their House. With prescription drug costs through the roof, House Democrats passed the Elijah Cummings’ Lower Drug Costs Now Act. With corruption running rampant in Donald Trump’s Washington, House Democrats passed the most comprehensive anti-corruption legislation in a generation. And with a need to jumpstart our economy and rebuild our nation while we raise American wages, House Democrats passed the Moving Forward Act. House Democrats have never stopped working for the people. And with a deadly pandemic taking close to a quarter million American lives while grinding our economy to a halt, House Democrats are up to the challenge we face tomorrow and for many years to come.
Cheri Bustos: (06:59)
That’s what people here in Moline expect from us and deserve from us. They want us to live by the same values that people here teach their kids. Decency, respect, hard work, and an appreciation for folks who may not look like you or your family. These are the values that represent our best selves as both a party and as a country. When we remember them, when we remember the people from places like Moline, we win. The whole country wins. Let us be grateful for the opportunity placed before us tonight as lawmakers, but let’s also be humble.
Cheri Bustos: (07:38)
There are millions of ballots left to count, and so much damage left for us to undo. Our path to the America we all believe in is in our grasp now. It’s right in front of us, right outside our front door. Speaker Pelosi, thank you for your leadership … for never losing sight of how best to use your awesome power as Speaker. For families, for children, and for a better future. It really is an incredible honor to be able to serve alongside you. Thank you all, and good night.
Nancy Pelosi: (08:13)
Thank you, Madam Chair. It is my honor to serve with you, and we both share the honor of serving with our most diverse and dynamic caucus. Most diverse in the history of any country, including our own … starting with our own. Now with this victory, we will proceed to prepare for the transition. We will talk about what we’ve talked about all along, as Madam Chair referenced. For the people, we will lower healthcare costs by lowering the cost of prescription drugs, and protecting the preexisting medical condition, as well as others from the assaults that the Republicans continue to make on them at the present time in the court. The Supreme Court of the United States.
Nancy Pelosi: (08:57)
For the people, we will increase paychecks by building the infrastructure of America in a green and resilient way, creating jobs and opportunity … not only for jobs, but for equity, for ownership of companies that participate in all of that. With workforce development educationally to train a young people on how to not only aspire to that profession, but perhaps to some ownership. And for the people, we will. We will talk about cleaner government with H.R. 1, which we will pass on the floor of the House on the very first day of the new Congress.
Nancy Pelosi: (09:41)
Madam Chair referenced the Elijah Cummings H.R. 3, our bill to lower the cost of prescription drugs. And also by enabling us to negotiate for the secretary of HHS to negotiate for lower prices. I want to reference in H.R. 1 our John Lewis ending voter suppression, a legislation that is so important. And as you’ve seen, so needed in this campaign. Madam Chair, as you had suggested, it’s not over until every vote is counted and there are plenty more votes to count. In fact, we haven’t even started in my state of California. The whole west coast and beyond. And again, we look forward to coming together in our Democratic majority in the Congress of the United States. That success would not be possible without your leadership. Thank you, Madam Chair Cheri Bustos. Thank you all. Good evening.