OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Lesley Stahl’s 60 Minutes interview with Nancy Pelosi aired yesterday and there are some interesting highlights. One exchange that is getting a lot of people fired up was on the subject of age. Specifically, Stahl raised questions about Nancy Pelosi’s advancing age, as well as that of many other lawmakers.
STAHL: Can we talk about the A-word?
PELOSI: What’s that?
PELOSI: Oh, age!
STAHL: You’re 80.
STAHL: Your number two, Steny Hoyer’s 81. Your number three, Jim Clyburn, is 80. Why haven’t you brought young people into the leadership? We’ve—
PELOSI: Because we have. You perhaps don’t know.
STAHL: Why does AOC complain that you have not been grooming younger people for leadership?
PELOSI: I don’t know. You’ll have to ask her — because we are.
STAHL: —that was kind of sharp, kinda dismissing her.
PELOSI: I’m not dismissing her. I respect her. I think she’s very effective as are other, many other members in our caucus that the press doesn’t pay attention to. But they are there and they are building support for what comes next.
Which is just a little hilarious because Stahl is 79 and Nancy is 80.
Lesley Stahl: Why does AOC complain that you have not been grooming younger people for leadership?
— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) January 11, 2021
And honestly, the outrage about the question is comical for two reasons: Dianne Feinstein and Joe Biden.
Democrats have previously questioned Dianne Feinstein’s fitness for office due to her advanced age, commenting that she’s “noticeably slowed in recent years.” That she “sometimes gets confused by reporters’ questions.” That she “will offer different answers to the same question depending on where or when she’s asked.” That “her appearance is frail.” That she may not “have the energy” to fight this confirmation battle. That “she’s not sure what she’s doing.” That she “relies heavily on her ever-present staff to deal with any issues, frequently turning to them for help in responding to inquiries.”
At the same time, Democrats have refused to acknowledge the exact same issues indicating a mental decline in Joe Biden.
But Democrats really didn’t appreciate the question and many balked at the hypocrisy of a 79 year old woman criticizing the age of an 80 year old woman.
Who’s being groomed for Leslie Stahl’s position?
What an inappropriate time to reference @SpeakerPelosi age, what a crass question to ask in a Constitutional crisis.
— FrossieMae (@frossiemae) January 11, 2021
I thought that was unnecessarily harsh, too. Especially considering that Leslie is the same age. Madame speaker has enough on her mind right now, and I’m sure she’s quite traumatized by the events on Wednesday.
— RashuFlutterbinson (@RashuFlutterbye) January 11, 2021
— HollywoodLife (@HollywoodLife) January 11, 2021
And Lesley Stahl had the gall to drag Speaker Pelosi. It’s time for LESLEY STAHL to step down and let younger women take HER place. See how that works?
— RoadRiderDiva (@RoadRiderDiva) January 11, 2021
I personally think that in a government stacked (on both sides) with lifelong politicians who have apparently amassed considerable wealth during their time in “public service,” questions about Nancy Pelosi’s age and years in office were perfectly acceptable.