Pelosi Challenger on Democratic Party: 'I'm Pulling the Fire Alarm Because the House Is Burning Down'

Leah Barkoukis
Posted: Nov 23, 2016 8:00 AM
Pelosi Challenger on Democratic Party: 'I'm Pulling the Fire Alarm Because the House Is Burning Down'

Rep. Tim Ryan, the Ohio congressman who’s challenging House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for the top Democratic position, is warning about troubling within his party.

President-elect Donald Trump’s win over insider Hillary Clinton, he told Fox Business, is a case in point.

"The average American, the average working-class American, flipped their middle finger to the establishment," Ryan said. "The Democratic establishment, the Republican establishment, Wall Street, they think everybody is more concerned with the donor class than they are with the working class. And they sent a very strong signal, which is why I got into this race because I'm trying to convince my colleagues, 200 members of our Democratic caucus, that the American people have asked for us to change things and we can't keep going down the same road." 

An example of going down the same road would be keeping Pelosi, who’s led House Democrats for more than 12 years, in her position as minority leader—especially now that Republicans control the House, Senate, and executive branch.

"I'm pulling the fire alarm right now is what I'm doing in the Democratic Party," Ryan said. "I believe we're in denial of what's happened. I'm pulling the fire alarm because the house is burning down."

If Democrats don’t make drastic changes, their party may be done for, he warned.

"We better get our act together or we will cease being a national party, we're going to be a regional party that fails to get into the majority and fails to do things on behalf of those working class people that were the backbone of the Democratic Party for so long," he said. "White, black, brown, gay straight, everybody wants economic opportunity and they don't see the Democrats as the party providing that and we'd better get our stuff together."