‘That really, on day one, left a bad taste in my mouth…’
(Michael Barnes, Liberty Headlines) New Jersey Democrat Andy Kim was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in November while touting a bipartisan “need for new leadership.”
But on his first day in office, Kim welshed on his campaign promise by voting for the hyper-partisan Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to be speaker of the House.
On Sunday, he got an earful during his first district town hall meeting.
One constituent publicly confronted Kim and wanted an explanation for why he betrayed his core campaign message—and bipartisan supporters.
“I did vote for you. And I know a lot of registered Republicans who did,” said the constituent.
“I was really on the fence, but the thing that changed my mind in your favor was your promise not to vote for Nancy Pelosi for speaker… but that really, on day one, left a bad taste in my mouth,” he said.
Kim is the second Korean–American congressman in history—and the first one elected as a Democrat. He also represents the most divided congressional district in New Jersey.
Several hundred people attended his first town hall, which Kim opened by apologizing for the recent 35-day partial government shutdown.
“Today I check politics at the door, and I come in and talk to you as your congressman, your representative down in Washington,” he said. “I just want to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry on behalf our government to have put your through that.”
But central to the shutdown fiasco was the ultra-progressive Pelosi, who refused sign onto bipartisan legislation to reopen the government or allow federal employees to be paid during border wall negotiations.
Kim asked for district residents to “give [him] a chance,” and hoped they would “understand” his change of heart.
He even offered that in order to oust Pelosi he needed to vote for her.
“When we’re trying to figure out how to make sure generational changes are coming and that there are new voices at the table, that step was important,” he said.
Kim is hardly alone in opposing Pelosi during the midterm cycle, only to support her as soon as he was elected.
In total, 19 Democratic congressmen who ran on opposing her wound up voting for her, with two others voting “present.”
A six-figure ad campaign was launched by the Congressional Leadership Fund early this month to hold these newly elected House Democrats accountable for lying to their constituents.