WASHINGTON – Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said today that Democrats will eventually “topple” President Trump, connecting today’s political climate to President Lyndon B. Johnson’s time in office during the Vietnam War.
“We hated that war and no one thought we could topple the most powerful man in the world, Lyndon Johnson – that’s how I got involved. I was 18 years old. I was cut from the basketball team my freshman year of college – that was supposed to be my ticket, although our team wasn’t that good…. A guy knocked on my door that night. I didn’t know what I would do with myself. He says, ‘come up to New Hampshire, work to end the Vietnam War.’ I had never seen such activity on the streets,” Schumer said at the annual Legislative & Policy Conference organized by Al Sharpton’s National Action Network on Capitol Hill.
“There was a man named Eugene McCarthy running, he’s a strong leader and was in the New Hampshire primary,” he recalled. “We did so well that Lyndon Johnson, the most powerful man in the world, said I am not going to run again, the people are against me – that was my start in politics.”
Schumer compared the protest fervor then to activism now against the Trump administration.
“Let me just say this: I’ve never seen so much energy and power out in the streets until this year, and if we keep it up we will topple the most powerful man in the world,” the senator said.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told conference attendees “black lives matter” and “white lies matter.”
“You know, there’s a lot to be said about black lives matter, right?” Pelosi said. “But here’s my take on it: white lies matter, and we want to hold people to the truth. And we want to hold people to the truth because that is what we should base our decisions on.”
Pelosi mentioned Trump’s criticism of Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.) after she went public with her account of the president’s phone conversation with the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, one of four U.S. soldiers killed a month ago in Niger. Trump attacked Wilson as “wacky,” while Gold Star widow Myeshia Johnson confirmed that Trump had told her that her late husband “knew what he signed up for” and said she was “angry” that he was “stumbling on trying to remember my husband’s name.”
“What? Do you think that is OK, Mr. President, for a president? And Frederica has been such a champion for kids, a mentor herself, enabling them to become mentors and the rest, she’s just great,” Pelosi said, referring to the 5000 Role Models of Excellence Project, through which Wilson knew Johnson and his family.
Pelosi said the Democrats “have to defeat” the new GOP tax reform plan.
“Is it a statement of your values to give tax breaks to the high end and take $1 trillion out of Medicaid in order to do that? I didn’t think so,” Pelosi said as the crowd said “no.”
“This is a values debate that we are having and again,” she added. “We stand ready to go to the table in a bipartisan way to work out our differences to create growth, to create good-paying jobs and reduce the deficit so that our budget has the privilege of investing in our children’s future.”