In 2019, a 79-year-old politician is telling a 76-year-old man who’s been in national politics for 47 years how he should behave around women.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about allegations again former Vice President Joe Biden, and she had some stern advice: Keep your distance.
“I don’t think it’s disqualifying because I don’t— I think it— disqualifying is with what your intention is,” Pelosi said at the breakfast event with Politico.
“I do think this about communication in general beyond this: I’m a member of the straight-arm club,” she continued, sticking her arm out, “you know, I’m a straight-armer,” laughing.
“Just pretend you have a cold and I have a cold,” she said, prompting laughs as she stuck her arm out again.
“But I think it’s important for the Vice President and others to understand is it isn’t what you intended, it’s how it was received,” Pelosi said.
“To say I’m sorry that you were offended is not an apology,” the House Speaker lectured Biden.
Then her explanation turned strange.
“My grandchildren, when they were little, like 5 and 6, now they’re more 10, 11, they would say— play games and they’d say ‘open sesame,'” she said, which is “a magical phrase in the story of ‘Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves’ in One Thousand and One Nights. It opens the mouth of a cave in which forty thieves have hidden a treasure,” according to Wikipedia.
“Except we don’t say sesame, we say ‘open Biden,'” she told the audience. “That’s the magic word, because he was just so lovely to them and paid attention to them,” she said.
“You know, he doesn’t unders— he has to understand in the world that we’re in now that people’s space is important to them,” Pelosi said.