Nancy Pelosi Warns Trump Against Harassing Whistleblower: 'You're in My Wheelhouse'

Speaker Nancy Pelosi ridiculed President Donald Trump for attacking the credibility of former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch or the whistleblower during testimony, cautioning him that such a move is a direct challenge to her leadership.

Pelosi said Trump and anyone else in Washington understands that the president's words have massive repercussions and "he should not frivolously throw out insults, but that's what he does." Speaking Sunday morning on CBS' Face the Nation, Pelosi said Trump's actions in the White House are "much worse" than those of former President Richard Nixon. She defended the impeachment process and warned Trump against trying to intimidate or harass the currently anonymous Ukraine whistleblower.

"I will make sure he does not intimidate the whistleblower," Pelosi said in an interview with Face the Nation host Margaret Brennan,which aired Sunday morning. "I told the president you're in my wheelhouse when you come after the whistleblower."

Pelosi went on to say Trump insulted the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine out of "his own insecurity as an imposter" in the White House.

When asked specifically of Trump's widely criticized comments about Yovanovitch during live public testimony this week, Pelosi challenged the president's own ability to even be in the White House. Trump claimed "everywhere [Yovanovitch] went turned bad." Republicans, including former Clinton prosecutor Kenneth Starr, chastised Trump for the live mockery.

"He knows, well, he made a mistake and he knows her strength and he was trying to undermine it," Pelosi replied. "Of course presidents appoint ambassadors but people don't insult people especially when they're giving testimony before the Congress of the United States...I think part of it is his own insecurity as an imposter...he knows full well he's in that office way over his head. And so he has to diminish everyone else."

Pelosi reiterated the U.S. intelligence community and the whistleblower are integral parts of the government, calling out alleged misdeeds made by the president and his administration.

"This is really important, especially when it comes to intelligence, that someone who would be courageous enough to point out truth to power and then through the filter of a Trump appointed inspector general who found it of urgent concern and then took it to the next steps," Pelosi said, noting Trump will have an opportunity to refute the claims in a public forum should he choose to do so.

"The president could come right before the committee and talk, speak all the truth that he wants if he wants," Pelosi added, noting Trump and Republicans' complaints that the impeachment inquiry has been a one-sided attack on his presidency.

"He has every opportunity to present his case," she said, rebuking this frequent claim from GOP Congressmen Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes.

"It's really a sad thing. I mean, what the president did was so much worse than even what Richard Nixon did," she said, echoing remarks the House Speaker made just last week, as reported by The Hill.

trump wont cooperate
President Donald Trump, flanked by Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, delivers the State of the Union address at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, on February 5. SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty