More than 20 Democratic candidates who have come out against, or dodged questions about whether they would vote for, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) for speaker if Democrats were to regain control of the House this fall have accepted cash from Pelosi's leadership PAC and campaign committee, according to a review of Federal Election Commission filings.
Pelosi has an approval rating hovering in the high 20s. Her low approval rating and high name recognition have led Republicans around the country to tie Democratic candidates to the unpopular minority leader.
As of Aug. 10, NBC News compiled a list of 57 Democratic candidates who have come out against Pelosi for speaker with around 40 remaining non-committal on whether they would vote for Pelosi.
Using NBC's list of candidates, the Washington Free Beacon has identified 22 Democrats who have either said they do not support Pelosi for speaker or publicly evaded answering the question outright yet nevertheless accepted cash to their campaign committees from PAC to the Future (Pelosi's leadership PAC) or Nancy Pelosi for Congress (her campaign committee) or both.
Those Democrats are as follows:
Against Pelosi as House speaker
- Anthony Brindisi – New York 22: "I believe it's time for new leadership on both sides of the aisle," Brindisi said, according to NBC News. (All of the quotes in this list appeared in the NBC News story.)
Brindisi has accepted $10,000, the maximum allowable combined amount for both the primary and general elections, from PAC to the Future, Pelosi's leadership PAC. Brindisi has also taken $4,000 total from Nancy Pelosi for Congress, Pelosi's campaign committee, filings show.
- Andy Kim – New Jersey 3: "As I'm now working to help my community here in New Jersey, it's time we have new leadership on both sides of the aisle in Washington to get the job done."
- Jill Schiller – Ohio 2: "I plan to vote for a new generation of leaders. … I've heard one consistent theme on the campaign trail: we need change in Washington, and I want to be a part of that change."
Schiller has taken $2,000 from Pelosi's campaign committee.
Democrats who have evaded saying whether or not they would vote for Pelosi
- Antonio Delgado – New York 19: "I am focused on reaching out and talking with voters every day about important issues like health care, restoring jobs and tax policy. … The people of our region are much more focused on these issues than Washington palace intrigue."
- Steven Horsford – Nevada 4: "Look, we are way, premature to be talking about who the next leader of the Congress is."
- Susie Lee – Nevada 8: "I'll make that decision when I get there."
- Betsy Dirksen Londrigan – Illinois 13: "I’ll be taking my nod from the voters right here in the district."
- Chrissy Houlahan – Pennsylvania 6: "I think it's a premature question."
- Lizzie Fletcher – Texas 7: Refused to endorse Pelosi.
- Gina Ortiz Jones – Texas 23: Would support the individual who is "going to be the best person to represent this district and fight for what matters most in this district."
- Harley Rouda – California 48: "Certainly I'm not in a good position to make any kind of decision right now."
- Abby Finkenauer – Iowa 1: "I'll be frank: Nobody has my vote until I get there and I sit down with them and we have a long conversation about my district and about the folks in it."
- Sean Casten – Illinois 6: Did not commit to voting for Pelosi, but did not rule it out.
- Cindy Axne – Iowa 3: "I'll support the leader that best supports the values of Iowa."
Axne has taken $10,000 from PAC to the Future and $4,000 from Pelosi's campaign committee.
- Susan Wild – Pennsylvania 7: "If any other political official had done what she has done, but had been male, that question would not constantly be coming up."
- Colin Allred – Texas 32: Will "see who's running for leadership and then make his decision based on who he thinks would do the best job for North Texas."
- Lauren Underwood – Illinois 14: "As of Wednesday, August 8, we are 90 days out from election day—that is my focus. I plan to vote for leaders who share the values of the 14th District."
- Lisa Brown – Washington 5: "I have already stated that I'd like to see new people included in the Democrats' leadership team. That being said, this decision is too important to make in advance without knowing who the candidates will be, discussing their performance with other members, especially those from the Northwest, and having a chance to interview them personally."
- Jennifer Wexton – Virginia 10: Has not answered.
- Randy Bryce – Wisconsin 1: "It's not something that I spend a lot of time thinking about. I'm extremely concerned about making sure we get another working person in Congress, and once I get there, I definitely would be anxious to see who wants to take the reins of the leadership position."
- Mary Gay Scanlon – Pennsylvania 5: "It's going to depend on who are all the candidates at this time and what are the circumstances at that time. I do think, as a whole, the Democrats need to cultivate the next generation and I think they would be best served by leveraging Nancy Pelosi's skills to help bring along the next generation. And I’m just not sure what that’s going to look like in a year and a half."
- TJ Cox – California 21: "This is what I hear about Nancy Pelosi: absolutely nothing. … When we do win, and when we take back the House that is when I will look at who the leadership should be."
The Washington Free Beacon reached out to all 22 campaigns for comment on the donations from Pelosi and will update accordingly.