Pelosi spox blasted for attacking journalist who correctly reported top Dem would step down from leadership

Nancy Pelosi's deputy chief of staff repeatedly slammed Puck News writer Tara Palmeri, who reported that the top Democrat would step down from leadership.

A top aide for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is getting chewed out by critics after he tacked a reporter who accurately revealed the top Democrat's plans ahead of Thursday's speech. 

Pelosi announced from the House floor that she will not seek re-election as leader of the House Democratic Conference after nearly 20 years at the helm but will remain in Congress to help support a new generation of leadership. 

On Monday, Puck News writer Tara Palmeri shared her scoop revealing Pelosi had made her decision to step down and to pass the torch to Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y. 

"Nothing in this reporting is correct," Pelosi deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill told Palmeri at the time. "As the Speaker just stated yesterday on national TV, she will make a decision once all the votes have been counted. She’s not even thinking about her future at this moment."


Hammill further took aim at Palmeri on Twitter even before Puck News published her report, attacking her credibility on a story that was ultimately correct. 


"Always something to hear from @tarapalmeri from @PuckNews who has zero sourcing in Pelosi world but is constantly trying to break news nevertheless. Since she rarely includes my responses, I'll go ahead & tweet before she posts as yet again nothing in her reporting is correct," Hammill wrote on Monday before . "I don't know who reads @PuckNews let alone pays for it, but I wanted to get ahead of @tarapalmeri 's latest typo-ridden Pelosi scoop to let everyone know that it's complete trash just like the last ones. That's all." 

"touched a nerve..." Palmeri replied. 

Hours before Pelosi gave her speech, Palmeri reported what the speaker ultimately shared in her speech, which was, again, attacked by Hammill. 

"I hate to break it to my favorite reporter but the Speaker took two versions of her speech home last night as has been reported. Anybody who tells you they know what she will do is a liar," Hammill wrote. 

"You're right Drew, her staff doesn't know," Palmeri responded, to which Hammill replied, "And you don’t either."

Palmeri's Puck News colleague Julia Ioffe slammed Hammill for the viral war-waging ahead of Pelosi's announcement. 


"After publicly tarring my colleague @tarapalmeri and calling her a liar for her absolutely correct reporting all week that Speaker Pelosi would step down, I think @Drew_Hammill owes Tara a public apology. Accountability matters," Ioffe wrote. 

Sharing a screenshot of Hammill's earlier tweets, Ioffe added, "This is not okay, Drew. Especially when you're wrong. Abuse is not part of the job."

Others dunked on Hammill's last-ditch effort to discredit Palmeri's reporting. 

"Well this looks incredibly obnoxious now," Insider reporter Bryan Metzger reacted.

"@tarapalmeri got it right," Wake Up 2 Politics author Gabe Fleisher wrote.

"This is what ended up happening. Literally no need to be that rude," National Journal Hotline reporter Matt Holt scolded Hammill. 

"We are only as good as our sources but I don’t think any of my colleagues trying to break news are liars!" New York Times correspondent Annie Karni tweeted. 

In response to Fox News' request for comment, Hammill shared a Twitter thread firing back at Ioffe.

"Here are the various things that were incorrect just this week that @tarapalmeri reported: Pelosi would endorse a successor. She didn't. She's long said that's up to Members not up to her. Pelosi would stay in Congress. That's nice. Pelosi said that on CNN on Sunday," Hammill wrote. "Pelosi would have a role advising leadership in some sort of formal emeritus role. Pelosi told reporters today she has no interest in that. - Pelosi was open to being Italian Ambassador. I've said this is crap for months."

Hammill continued, "Pelosi had decided to step down from leadership. Tara reported this before the Speaker had made a decision. Last night, the Speaker went home with two versions of her speech (1 stay in leadership, 1 not). Tara routinely doesn't include quotes from me that contradict her stories. This time, Tara guessed and wants praise for a scoop. That's not journalism and I've never gotten more positive feedback than for calling her out -- MOSTLY from other journalists."

On Twitter, the Puck News writer rejected Hammill's characterization that Pelosi had "endorsed" her successor, a term she said she never used. Palmeri also reported Thursday she would remain in Congress and not take the gig as the ambassador to Italy.

Fox News reached out to Palmeri for comment. Puck News declined to comment. 

Pelosi's announcement came just one day after Republicans officially clinched its 218-seat majority in the House of Representatives with a few races outstanding that could bolster the GOP's slim control.

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