Mark Levin declared of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: "[S]he's gotta have a big military jet. I mean, she's the first woman speaker. She wants a really, really big one. ... And if she doesn't get it, well then that's sexual discrimination." Levin ignored the fact that the House sergeant-at-arms -- who is responsible for the security of House members -- has said that a larger military plane for Pelosi, "that is capable of making non-stop flights" between Washington, D.C., and California, is necessary for "security purposes."
On the November 24 broadcast of his radio show, while discussing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) use of military planes to travel between Washington, D.C., and her home district in California, Mark Levin remarked, "[S]he's gotta have a big military jet. I mean, she's the first woman speaker. She wants a really, really big one. Remember this? And if she doesn't get it, well then that's sexual discrimination." Levin also claimed that Pelosi "fought like hell for [an] extra big military jet so she could take her staff, and her staff's staff, and her relatives, and her friends -- have a grand old party on that jet." In fact, as Media Matters for America has repeatedly noted, the House sergeant-at-arms -- who is responsible for the security of House members -- said that the larger military plane is necessary for "security purposes."
In a February 8, 2007, statement, made in response to GOP allegations at the time that Pelosi "desire[d] a luxury taxpayer-funded Pelosi One to ferry her family and friends," House sergeant-at-arms Wilson Livingood said:
As the Sergeant at Arms, I have the responsibility to ensure the security of the members of the House of Representatives, to include the Speaker of the House. The Speaker requires additional precautions due to her responsibilities as the leader of the House and her Constitutional position as second in the line of succession to the presidency.
In a post 9/11 threat environment, it is reasonable and prudent to provide military aircraft to the Speaker for official travel between Washington and her district. The practice began with Speaker [Dennis] Hastert [R-IL] and I have recommended that it continue with Speaker Pelosi. The fact that Speaker Pelosi lives in California compelled me to request an aircraft that is capable of making non-stop flights for security purposes, unless such an aircraft is unavailable. This will ensure communications capabilities and also enhance security. I made the recommendation to use military aircraft based upon the need to provide necessary levels of security for ranking national leaders, such as the Speaker. I regret that an issue that is exclusively considered and decided in a security context has evolved into a political issue.
McClatchy Newspapers noted on October 31 of this year that the House sergeant-at-arms "requested a larger military aircraft" for Pelosi, and also reported that the Bush administration first "authorized the speaker of the House of Representatives ... to fly on military planes when they're available for official business."
During his November 24 broadcast, Levin also smeared Pelosi over her physical appearance, stating that he calls her " 'Stretch,' given her multiple facelifts." He added: "Do you think eyes bulge out like that? Do you think that's a natural look? No. She spent a fortune for that look. She loves it. Now, the rest of us recoil at it, but she apparently likes it." As Media Matters documented, on the April 5, 2007, broadcast of ABC Radio Networks' The Sean Hannity Show, Levin similarly said of Pelosi: "You could bounce a dime off her cheeks. The woman has had so many facelifts, isn't it obvious to everybody?"
From the November 24 broadcast of ABC Networks' The Mark Levin Show:
LEVIN: Now, Nancy Pelosi, or as we call her, with all due respect, "Stretch," given her multiple facelifts. Mark, what do you mean? Why do I have to explain this every time? Do you think eyes bulge out like that? Do you think that's a natural look? No. She spent a fortune for that look. She loves it. Now, the rest of us recoil at it, but she apparently likes it.
You know, we gotta get that Levin off the air as fast as we can, he is so --
Anyway, anyway, here we -- the outcry over the automakers' corporate jets. Remember that? AP: "After being skewered by Congress and lampooned on NBC's Saturday Night Live, the CEOs of Detroit's three automakers may end up making the return trip to Washington by car, as they seek a federal bailout." Now, this is fascinating to me. I'm not into all this populist crap. I don't care if they fly jets or not. I just don't want to subsidize them; it's none of my business otherwise. But maybe they can hitch a ride with Pelosi. Doesn't she have a big military jet? Why is it that these politicians can live like kings and queens? And nobody gives a damn. She fought like hell for extra big military jet so she could take her staff, and her staff's staff, and her relatives, and her friends -- have a grand old party on that jet. Does anybody know how much that jet costs? I don't have the foggiest idea. Does anybody know how much the staff on that jet costs? The pilot, the co-pilot, and all the rest -- I don't have an idea, do you? No. Where's Brian Ross of ABC News? How come he's not tracking that down?
Now, we all have to tighten our belts; we're all gonna have to sacrifice. We gotta cut the CO2s, except if you're speaker of the House. You'll spit out as much CO2 as you want. Yeah, I know, only in America.
CALLER: Hey, Mark, I just wanted to fill you in on one thing. I was interested in your statement about wondering how much it costs to fly Nancy from D.C. to San Francisco.
LEVIN: This would be "Stretch" Pelosi, yes.
CALLER: Yes, yes. So, I did some googling, and I came up with just a fuel price alone of $32,500 dollars.
CALLER: Yep. That's no -- no oil, no people --
LEVIN: Well, let me ask you a question.
LEVIN: Let me ask you a question. Are there any solar panels on this plane?
CALLER: No, I don't believe there are. I'm surprised. Maybe "The One" will figure that out.
LEVIN: And any wind power on this plane? Other than the tailwind?
CALLER: No, no, I think it's only her wind power.
LEVIN: That would be methane.
LEVIN: Any other -- any other kind of non-carbon dioxide-type fuel that they might use on this plane?
CALLER: No, no, all just dead dinosaurs.
LEVIN: All right, my friend, thank you for your call. Now, if Mike's accurate, that's 32 grand, and that's just for starters. So, it seems to me, if the executives of the Big Three are going to be using car vans now -- caravans, rather -- to come to Washington, why shouldn't Stretch? She can pick up some other losers along the way. I can just see it now. I mean, she is in San Francisco, she's got a long way to go before she gets to Washington. They can carpool, these leftists. They can, you know, teach us by example. But no, she's gotta have a big military jet. I mean, she's the first woman speaker. She wants a really, really big one. Remember this? And if she doesn't get it, well then that's sexual discrimination.