Reading a piece of paper in front of reporters can be difficult — especially if you don’t know what’s on it and you’re already having trouble speaking.
Nancy Pelosi found that out the hard way on Thursday when she became flustered reading a prepared statement to the media.
Seconds into her remarks, she appeared to be off-script, stopped, looked towards the ceiling, let out a deep sigh and shook her head before she continued on.
“Uh, the budget, which is the framework, uh, for where we go from here. Today, they have started to unveil, uh, tax bill designed to plunder the middle class in order to put the, uh,” she said, before stopping and letting out a deep sigh and shaking her head.
“…to put into the pockets of the wealthiest 1%,” she said.
Moments later, she said, “We have always said, we stand ready to join the Republicans at the table to— produce growth,” appearing to have a momentary brain freeze.
She had trouble forming words as she said, “Perpetuating a catastrophic transfer of wealth from the middle class to corporations and the wealthy. I’ll say it overnight,” she seemed to say.
Seconds later, it happened again.
“For the future of our country, not even speaking from the stand point of our sfee,” apparently trying to say “state.”
“For the future of our country,” she repeated.
“And so this is, this is a fight that we are in. And there are many things that we criticize about the Republican budget— how it taxes— increases taxes on the middle class.
“Uh, rampages, uh, ransacks Medicare, Medicaid. Gives tax breaks, why? To give tax breaks to the high end,” she said, frequently tripping over words or repeating them.
“But we want to make that if they needed any,” stopping briefly, then continuing, “clarification, or splaining,” she said, botching the word “explaining.”
She thanked her colleagues for attending, looked awkwardly at reporters and left the podium.