“She was pretty unhinged,” Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA) told Breitbart News about House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) in his first print interview since the California Democrat confronted the Republican lawmaker in a startling altercation on the House floor last week.
The incident was so heated that Marino said the Sergeant-at-Arms of the House of Representatives had to remove Pelosi–with help from others–from the floor.
Marino had taken to the House floor to make a statement during the House’s debate on two immigration bills, during which he criticized House Democrats–who were in the majority for the first two years of President Obama’s administration–for not having “the strength” to fix immigration then.
“I was making a statement on the floor about immigration and each side was debating the issue,” he explained. “I was tired of hearing the other side, particularly Pelosi, saying this bill’s going nowhere and the president will veto it, and it certainly won’t get through the Senate and it’s a waste of time, and she actually started calling out Boehner and McCarthy by name, saying it’s a terrible piece of legislation they made worse.”
“I got sick of it, so I went up and asked for a couple of minutes to speak–I wasn’t scheduled to speak. I said, first of all, we have a job to do here in the House regardless of what Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) does. He’d already said he’s doing nothing–and even if he collects bills and does nothing, and the president doesn’t sign it, we have a responsibility to pass good legislation,” Marino said. “I said furthermore, we’re tired of the Democrats making a political issue out of this, because under the leadership of the previous Speaker and previous leader on the Democrat side, they had in 2009 and 2010 the White House, the Senate, and the House, and they didn’t have the courage to pass significant immigration legislation.”
At that point, Pelosi charged at him. “She started coming over to me while I was speaking and I didn’t realize it, wagging her finger and calling me a liar, saying ‘that’s not true,'” Marino said. “And I said no, I deal with facts. I’m a prosecutor. I do my research and told her to check the facts out and maybe you should do your own research and check the facts out. Then she started to walk away and the acting Speaker actually didn’t say anything about her crossing the floor, which I’m surprised, he said to me to direct my remarks to the Speaker and I said that works both ways, and I finished my comments and said you need to vote for this legislation and secure the border.”
The altercation wasn’t over at that point. When Marino was done speaking, Pelosi made another pass at him.
“Apparently I struck a nerve and this was not the end of it–I was backing down the aisle and she came running over to me that time,” Marino said. “Somebody said, ‘look out behind you!’ She came up to me and said ‘you are inconsequential,’ and ‘you are just insignificant’–twice she said I was ‘insignificant.’ I let it go, but she said it again and I said ‘you are acting arrogant.'”
“She said to that ‘you’re the rude one’ and I said ‘no, I guess the truth hurts.’ Then I said ‘if you want to talk about this, let’s go back to the cloakroom so we’re not seen on the floor,'” he continued. “Then she kept waving her finger and getting all kinds of spastic. I was perfectly calm and I think that’s also what unhinged her, because she thought she could get me upset or thought I was going to be afraid of her.”
“Then the Sergeant-at-Arms, security, and someone from her side then took her off the floor,” Marino said. “I saw them walk up, one of the guys, and then someone told me later they took her off the floor.”
“She was just real out of control and I wasn’t going to take it,” he explained. “People have been there for 30 years and they’ve said they’ve never seen an exhibition like that–it was a tremendous breach of protocol to cross the well and to do that. She thinks she’s royalty and I’m not going to put up with that. I’m not afraid of anybody–I’m a gentleman. But there’s only two people who can wag their fingers in my face and get away with it and that’s my mother and my wife.”
Marino, a former prosecutor who’s now in his second term in the House since being elected from a rural Pennsylvania district in 2010, said he’s not surprised at Pelosi’s loss of control.
“Nothing shocks me of what she does anymore–she’s so unhinged,” Marino said. “I was a prosecutor for 18 years. I’ve been threatened by drug dealers, organized crime, and murderers, and that was a walk in the work.”
Marino was pleased with the package of legislation the House passed–a supplemental appropriations bill that cracks down on asylum for illegal aliens and a separate bill from Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) that aims to stop, using Congress’ power of the purse, President Obama’s planned and prior executive amnesties, especially the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
“I think we made history–we really changed the process of the way decisions are made,” Marino said. “I commend [Speaker John] Boehner and [Majority Leader Kevin] McCarthy for allowing us to do that, and I think we’ll see more of it.”
“The House was supposed to leave Thursday morning to go to recess but we said ‘no we’re going to stay to help the American people,'” he added. “My phones are ringing off the hook–my cell phone, my tweets. When Pelosi said I’m ‘insignificant’, that doesn’t bother me. But she insulted the people in my district and the American people.”
“How dare a sophomore congressman from rural Pennsylvania challenge her? Her party may be afraid to challenge her and her chairs over there may be afraid to challenge her, but I’m a street fighter,” Marino declared. “I’m a gentleman and my father taught me to be a gentleman, but I’m not backing down. Are you kidding me? This is just a tell for the future. No one has ever done this to her, I’m hearing from people on the other side–and she couldn’t handle it. But those facts are pesky things that get in way.”
Marino said the far left-wing extreme views of the Democratic Party were on display for all to see on Friday night in the House when the bills were being debated.
“The goal of this administration and the president has directed Reid to not pass any bills,” Marino said. “If you pass any bills, it’s going to make the Democrat senators up for re-election vulnerable, and they don’t want them to have a voting record. That is terrible and we need to change that.”
“This isn’t about immigration reform from the Democrats–this is a giant voter registration that they want. These people want them get amnesty. If they want to come into this country legally, then they need to go back and do it properly,” he stated. “I’m second generation Italian, and I have nothing against immigrants–my grandparents came over. But they just want to sign up everyone to be Democrats and then the Democrats will control the White House and Congress for years and years to come. His goal is just to make the Republican House look so bad to win the House back–they need that House back, and Nancy Pelosi will do anything to become Speaker again.”
Marino added there would be drastic consequences for the president if he did use executive power to grant amnesty to 5-6 million more illegal aliens, as he says he is planning to do.
“I think a lot of this is just talk with the president because he’s got to have some political intellect here, because if he does that that assures, in my opinion, that not only will Republicans keep the House but will pick up seats and take over the Senate,” Marino said. “The American people are not going to put up with this. The polls are showing 70-80 percent of the American people do not want amnesty. They want some type of immigration reform–we all want some kind of immigration reform–but they don’t want amnesty. It all depends on what you mean by ‘immigration reform’ when the polls are asking people.”
Marino also said Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are “quintessential examples” of why America needs term limits for lawmakers.
“People like Pelosi need to realize we work for the American people, not the other way around,” he said. “This thing of having everybody stepping out of your way as a congressman and running around with car doors opened for you, and people waiting on you hand and foot–there’s the problem.”
“Three things need to happen in D.C. to change what’s happened over the last 80 years. One is we need term limits to get rid of them. She and Harry Reid are the quintessential example of why we need term limits. Number two is one subject at a time in a bill so the American people can understand what we’re voting for and why, and the third thing is no leader can prevent a piece of legislation from going to the floor if it makes it out of committee,” Marino said. “Republicans are to blame for this as well, and these games that are played in Congress–they’ve been taking place for decades by both parties and they have to stop because we have to get the work done. We’re in a meltdown point when it comes to the economy.”