Nancy Pelosi Says Attack on Her Husband Showed Voters That Political Division 'Has Gone Too Far'

Pelosi appeared on This Week with George Stephanopoulos Sunday to discuss Democrats' midterms success, her husband Paul's recovery and her political future

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) talks to repoorters minutes after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Roe v Wade, which guaranteed a woman's right to an abortion, in the Capitol Visitors Center on June 24, 2022 in Washington, DC. The court ruled 6-3 in Dobbs v Jackson Women's Health, overturning a 50-year precedent and sending abortion regulation back to the states. "Today, the Republican-controlled Supreme Court has achieved the GOP’s dark and extreme goal of ripping away women’s right to make their own reproductive health decisions," Pelosi said
Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says that while her husband, Paul Pelosi, recovers from a violent hammer attack that fractured his skull, the family continues to feel uplifted by well-wishers around the nation.

"He's one good day after another, he's improving," she told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos on Sunday's episode of This Week. "It will take a little while."

Pelosi, 82, also adds that the violence served as a wake-up call to Americans of how dangerous political division can be, noting that people have reached out to her to say, "I wasn't going to vote, but now I'm going to vote because this has gone too far."

Pelosi has had a difficult few weeks, aiding in her 82-year-old husband's recovery as she continued to rally support for Democratic House candidates nationwide. Her longstanding belief that Democrats would fare well in the midterms, despite polling that suggested otherwise, turned out to be true.

"It was not anything that we ever accepted when the pundits in Washington said we couldn't win because history, history, history. Elections are about the future," she told Stephanopoulos. "I'm very proud of our candidates, both our incumbents as well as our red to blue candidates. They never accepted the punditry that they couldn't win. They had courage, they had purpose, and they understood their district."

As election forecasts started shifting heavily in favor of Republicans in the final weeks of campaign season, pundits sought answers about why, wondering if enthusiasm for reproductive rights had faded over time and accusing Democrats of failing to articulate their vision for the country.

Now, Pelosi has the data to support why candidates campaigned on the issues that they did. "Our message was clear: people over politics. Lower cost, bigger paychecks, safer communities," she said. "And [Democratic candidates] knew the value of a woman's right to choose. They knew how important it was to protect our democracy. They knew the contrast between themselves and their opponents, and that is what made them win."

From left: Kamala Harris, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi
From left: Kamala Harris, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi. Saul Loeb - Pool/Getty

Pelosi added that Democrats' unexpected success in House, Senate and gubernatorial races should be a lesson to anyone who tries to call a race before voting day. "It suppresses the vote sometimes when people say 'it's all over' 18 months before the election. We never accepted that."

Democrats still look more likely than not to forfeit their majority in the House, an outcome Americans have been prepared for all year. But if Republicans do take control, it'll be by a razor-thin margin — not the 35-seat lead that some predicted.

"Whatever the outcome, we're on the path to taking our country to a better place rather than being dragged down by the other side," Pelosi said.

Once the House majority is determined, Pelosi is expected to reveal whether she plans to remain the Democratic House leader, or if she will step back and make room for someone else to take over.

She previously said she would leave the post after the 2022 election, but her effective leadership over the past two years has some wondering if she'll opt to continue her hot streak.

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