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Speaker Pelosi throws cold water on resolution to honor Michael Jackson

Even in death, Michael Jackson has the power to create controversy.

During the Monday memorial service in Los Angeles, Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee told Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Californiathe thousands of mourners in Staples Center (and the hundreds of millions of fans around the world, eagerly watching on television) that she would introduce a resolution in the hope of honoring the King of Pop for his humanitarian efforts around the world.

The Democratic congresswoman displayed a framed copy of the resolution she was proposing and insisted it would come to the floor.

On the face this would seem to be a no-brainer: iconic singer and long-time donor to charities gets a last recognition. Besides, anyone whose death can so monopolize the public arena should be a slam-dunk for a congressional resolution.

Not so fast, as The Ticket warned Wednesday in this item.

Some Republicans, including Long Island Rep. Peter King, said they had problems with the adulation pouring over Jackson. King, in a video posted on YouTube, called the....

...late singer a “pervert, child molester, [and] pedophile" and said he would oppose any resolution.

This morning, Speaker Nancy Pelosi weighed in and seemed to throw cold water on a resolution, but indicated she would allow members to express their sorrow.

 "Do you favor bringing a Jackson memorial resolution to the floor?” Pelosi was asked at a televised news conference.

“Michael Jackson was a great, great performer," Pelosi said. There’s "lots of sadness there for many reasons."

The speaker then tried to strike a diplomatic note, replying that there is “ample opportunity for members to say what they want on the floor, so a resolution is unneeded.”

The issue, of course, involves the molestation charges brought against Jackson. The congresswoman noted at the memorial that Jackson was acquitted of the criminal charges and attacked those who "don’t understand the hearts of entertainers" and "don’t know how they heal the world on behalf of America."

"We understand the Constitution,” the Texas congresswoman said at the memorial. “We understand laws and we know people are innocent until proven otherwise. That is what the Constitution stands for."

The congresswoman explained how she helped bring Jackson to a 2004 meeting in her Capitol Hill office with ambassadors from African countries. At the time, Jackson was considering a tour to raise money to fight AIDS.

– Michael Muskal

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Photo: Susan Walsh / Associated Press
Comments () | Archives (49)

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I think this is the only time I ever agreed with Nancy!

Excuse me? A resolution to honor a pervert?

No way!!!!

I would support a resolution if the wording were right. His We are the World helped a lot of people.

I think this is the only time I've ever agreed with the house republicans!

Abby: the real perverts are the liars and golddiggers who you and other morons enable.

When I heard congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee say (at the memorial) that this measure was going to be "debated" in congress, I thought the whole thing was a disaster-in-waiting.

So, I agree fully with Nancy Pelosi, and think that her motives are pure and kind -- she doesn't want MJ's name and family to be put through the nastiness that she KNOWS would erupt were such a measure "debated." Good golly, I can just imagine the vitriole, hate, fear, judgment, and anger that would pollute us all were that to happen.

Seriously. Good job, Nancy. Keep that cold water running.

All my best,


To: abby0802 & steve rodriguez,

Had he been white, we would not be having this conversation.

Nancy Pelosi, you are already at a low rating. By opposing this you will be even lower. Don't push it, the fans will crush you.

We had to endure all the funerals for dead presidents who did nothing for the people of these United States. Sent jobs overseas, killed millions in other countries and took care of the rich only. Many of whom I disprised. Pelosi has done little for anyone except her own career.

That is what is wrong with the American people. If it does not go your way just hollar race. As AL Sharpton tried to say that Michael crossed boundries and was the reason Obama got elected, let me say he is not the reason. He was a great musician and entertainer. We as white Americans did like his music, so race has nothing to do with it. Obama got elected because more white people thought he would do a better job than a republican no matter who that was.He had to much controversy around him. So please get rid of the race card. That is just a very poor reason to try and force someone to do something

Now if only our Local leaders thought this way maybe we wouldnt have wasted a couple million dollars on NOTHING!

Michael Jackson was not a head of state. He did not represent the US in any ambassadorial position. He was a businessman. He did what he did to make money, the same reason any of has our current job. He happened to be more popular than most.

His molestation charges were dismissed, but there is no denying that he slept with minors. Stupid! He also abused prescription drugs and do I hope that ever doctor who enabled him is prosecuted.

Michael Jackson does not deserve a Congressional resolution as long as we have two major wars going on, a sunk economy, no type of national health care....

America the land of contradictions and hypocrisy to the nth degree. I agree with rep King's comments. MJ is dead today because he bought his way out of jail for being a pop star. Had Michael had the money of regular American, he would still be in jail today. The only thing that rep King did not mention and it's the other gorilla in the room is the drug abuse problem. They found a pharmacy of illegal prescription drugs in his house. The family, friends, medical personnel knew that MJ was abusing drugs and did nothing about. It's a shame that such poor example of a man has to be honored just because he is black, And the millions that cared so much for MJ, cared nothing for the war crimes of the Bush and Obama's administrations. Go figure. Are we crazy or what.

To bury the idea to oblivion and don't let bullies shove it through the throat of Congress seems to be the only way right now. In a few days, when the sorrow for the untimely death of Jackson fades, details about the circumstances of the death surface, and the fight for his millions becomes the only thing that matters to the "family", dramatic outpourings like the one by the Congresswoman will dissappear altogether.

Nancy Pelosi's public approval rating is very low. I fully support a woman as speaker, but she has not done anything that stands out.

Her position on the MJ resolution will take her down a few more points.

Does the constitution still mean anything? Do we really want a person running our congress who denies the rules of the U S Consitiution?

Not me.. I am a Californian from her district, and like many others here, we think a mistake was made to put her in as Madame Speaker...

I hope the next congress see how much of a failure she is and get somebody in there that is really about serving the people. She talks the talk - but she does not walk the walk.

Yeah, let's pass on the resolution. Let the Hall of Fame organizations do their bit in honoring Michael Jackson. Our politicians have much more important things to do like make sure this country doesn't slip into The Great Depression Part 2.

please-Jackson-Lee just wants votes....

Rep King is a pervert. Look at the record, Mark Foley, David Vitter, Larry Craig, Mark Sanford; politicians who scream loudest about child molesting, gays, and adultery are doing it themselves. He did mention Jackson drug use because that is not a problem he has himself

honoring the King of Pop for his humanitarian efforts around the world ?

never heard of the King of Pop for his humanitarian efforts in Singapore !

Two billions people - estimated - around the world watched his memorial, through televisions but most of all Internet and social networks. The appreciation for the man, despite of 20 years of complete humiliaton by the press, comes from the people who recognized his stunning talent and his art.
michael jackson was a genius, an amazing global artist who reached with his language the entire world, from the classy man in Manhattan to the poorest family in India...Everybody in the world knows who Michael Jackson is thanks to his music, his lyrics, his dancing, his message and his charisma. He has done so much to spread your culture all around the Planet! No one in history was so Worldwide like Jackson. What a character, what an artist. You American People should be proud of this guy, I tell you as an Italian who admire USA but sometimes...i don't know, i can't undersand how could you beat this genius so down and continue to do so...ciao!

There are more important things our government must focus their efforts on right now.
A resolution is not needed to remember a great performer.
Simply say a prayer for him and move on.
Our taxes must not go to such nonsense.
I don't know if he was a pervert, only he (and those kids) know that. Regardless, get on with the business of our country, not this TMZ level crap. Republicans lost our trust, Democrats will make us a laughing stock (ala Bill Clinton) again. I think we will see many many more independents now that both parties have proven virtually useless.
Do you truly believe these people get into politics for US? Of course they don't. It's all about self-interest, power, favors, etc.
Wish I had some answers to change that, but it is the truth.

That "he was found not guilty" thing: How does that appy to OJ and his murder trial?
Unfortunately, Michael has the same verdict in the court of public opinion as OJ Simpson.
Juries render wrong verdicts all of the time.

Shame on Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee. She's a terrible representative and was also a terrible Houston City Councilwoman before that.
Michael Jackson hated being Black, which is why his children are White.
NO ACTION is needed by the US House concerning this Wacko Jacko

May I suggest you all do a simple Google search to find out what other kinds of congressional resolutions were introduced and passed? I read that from 2006-2008, 2,000 of these types of feel-good resolutions were introduced by congresspeople to cater to their constituents.

A little smattering:
- resolution honoring the achievements of TV's "Mr. Wizard
- resolution congratulating the 2007 Arizona Wildcats softball team (that one was backed by John McCain)
- resolution honoring Heisman winner Tim Tebow
- resolution for a day recognizing "Race Day in America" (Daytona 500)
- resolution declaring "National Day of the Cowboy"
- resolution congratulating the Indiana Colts
-resolution expressing support of the goals and ideals of National Carriage Driving Month.
-resolution recognizing all hunters across the United States for their continued commitment to safety.

all of the above resolutions were passed.

So, give me a break with the faux outrage about spending precious debate time on "frivolous" items.

Call me crazy, but if congress can allocate the time and resources to pass a resolution officially designating a "National Watermelon Day," why not acknowledge the contribution and impact of a humanitarian who has contributed money and timeless art for the betterment of society? SHEESH.

I have gone from loving Polosi when she was first named as Speaker to now on the verge of hating her. She got alot of nerves. She has never learned how to do her job.


Did Jackson have inappropriate relations with kids? Yes. Does that make him a child rapist or whatever people are calling him no. GET OVER IT HATERS!!!

All I have to say is that the Congresswoman was right. We have laws and rights in the US that generations have died to protect. One of those basic rights is that you are innocent until proven guilty. Michael Jackson was NEVER convicted of anything.

It is not surprising to me that the leaders of the Republican party would not recognize those rights or laws. That party for the last 10-20 years has done everything it could to ensure that the rights in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are ignored or stripped. The NY Republican is just another in a long line of tyrants to feel that the laws of our great country do not matter.

MJ deserves to be recognized for his positive contributions because those have been PROVEN.

It has nothing to do with MJ being black or white, Poster Joann. We just elected an African American to the Presidency. Can we get over the black and white crap? The whole idea of a resolution is over the top. Lots of people, celebrity or otherwise help to raise money for charities. That doesn't mean we make them idyllic heroes. He was a consummate entertainer and a wonderful singer and songwriter. That's it. His life was tragic but he doesn't rate a resolution, a Nobel or any other kind of commemoration. We gave more coverage to his funeral than our President speaking across the world to another President, our former nemesis. Hello? Priorities?

Michael Jackson was the World's Greatest Entertainer!
Get Over It...
I'm a White Male-Democrat who voted for McCain....
Sorry, I call it like I see it.....
Everybody have a nice day.......

IF ONLY Nancy Pelosi had more important things to do than dignifying an exaggerated MJ Tribute, such as:
- ending the Iraq war and prosecuting the war criminals behind it
- conceivably doing things that matter to Americans, rather than endlessly buttering up the bailout perverts of Wall Street.

But she doesn't.

Under these circumstances, Michael Jackson is more important than Nancy Pelosi, if only marginally.

Sadly, blatant stupidity in the Democratic Party runs rampant like an angry mob. All common sense is thrown out the window, and before you know it, something really regrettable has happened. I don't like Nancy Pelosi at all. She is a self-serving hypocrite of major magnitude and is a total embarrassment to the State of California. However, at least she is smart enough to realize that members of her party are just about to go over a cliff like a bunch of mindless lemmings with this Michael Jackson stuff. Pouring cold water on Shelia Jackson Lee is maybe the very first thing Nancy Pelosi has ever done right in her entire political career.

maybe we should give national recognition to all the child molesters in America...why not have a national I LOVE CHILD MOLESTER DAY...what a joke. this cult of celebrity is something to behold...and americans just cant get enough of worthless criminals and drug addicts!

interesting article

wait.... michael jackson was black?

Like Jackson said, innocent until proven guilty. Take the matter up with the Justices of the court. Good grief the man was not guilty!!!
Uh, any "human being" who would take 20M if they thought there child was molested is a perv themselves. No amount of money can replace that pain! Enough said...

I don't like Nancy Pelosi and am not a supporter of hers. But I think she has this right. While during this period of mourning there were almost 50 US military personnel killed in service to this country. They were never even mentioned in any format. To allow this happen would be to cheapen the purpose of the House Resolutions.

I personally don't believe that a pedo pill popper deserves any recognition.

Michael Jackson doesn't care about any resolutions or congresswomen's opinions. Michael Jackson is leaning like a smooth criminal and laughing at the insipid poseurs that inhabit the halls of government.

What great humanitarian aid did MJ lead or create? Name it and quantify it. He did no better than many who get no recognition at all. It was all marketing spin to rehab his image after he turned white and said it was okay to share his bed with little boys. The spin continues because the MJ gravy train will still make a lot of people rich and they won't let anything get in the way of their greed.

This whole Michael Jackson thing is a crashing bore!

Thank you, Nancy.

A resolution for a pervert? Does that mean we have to have one for each of our congressmen?

They would have rushed this bill through if it was Elvis.

Michael Jackson's done more for than world than Nasty Pelosi will ever do.

She should stop being a coward catering to conservatives.

Dear Joann, You just played the "race card" on us!!!!

I am starting the official Michael Jackson Free Zone movement in Terry, Montana. No signs, posters, music or comments to be made about the King of Pop anywhere within the zone. Maybe Nancy Pelosi is trying to do the same for the House of Representives. The country has more important matters to attend.

For me, to see the outpouring for MJ, unlike Pete King from NY can ever underderstand, not only here but in the United States, but the world over. To see that the President of the United States on an overseas tour to the all important Russia, had to fight like crazy (and lose) to get some coverage in the media, tells us all something. We were celebrating the passing and loss of one of the greatest human beings that ever lived. He GAVE and was a very giving person and in listening to the messages in his music, we who love life and love humanity, identified with him. He WAS and FOREVER WILL BE the greatest of all time, never mind Pete King, Nancy Pelosi, and all the naysayers (haters).

When we can name buildings after the ultimately despicable J. Edgar Hoover, who sponsored so much domestic murder and mayhem with COINTELPRO. When the lying Liar George Bush and his Veep. Dick Chaney can still walk around free men with the death of so many American boys and girls on their hands, sent to their deaths like sheep...and we still manage to pick on MJ, we know we have our priorities wrong.

But it speaks to America's deeper problem. We can't come to terms with Black People representing what the WORLD sees as GOOD with AMERICA. If we can villify the Black man or woman or otherwise demean his or her talents and contributions we should...and then we gloss over indiscretions of White People who do the same thing. Frank Sinatra...anyone say Mafia? Elvis, anyone say Junkie? And despite their flaws we can still say, they were AMERICAN Originals. Give MJ his due. When all the congressional honors get doled out to so many nationally insignificant things, why cant we recognize that MJ was one of the greatest Americans EVER! And by the way, I like Pete King and Nancy Pelosi, am an immigrant...lets not forget President Andrew Jackson and his fellow Presidents indiscretions against the original inhabitants, the Native Americans...and he (Jackson) is on our about HONOR.

So it is true, a prophet is never revered in his own land.

I believe the person who outlined what they give resolutions for was on I think of his citizenry in th world....a US resolution palls in comparison...

Truly he will be revered...and where he is now...even more so...Let he or she who is without error, mistake, falls, etc. cast the first stone...


Had he been black, we would not be having this conversation.

However, being a white guy, he does not have a chance of being honored by Congress. Just ask the greatest entertainer of all time, Elvis Presley.


To: LA Lady,

you wrote, "They would have rushed this bill through if it was Elvis.".

Well then, why don't they? Its not too late. Sadly such a bill was not even introduced. If Elvis had been Michael Jackson, such a bill would have been introduced.

Martha in D.C.

I have a novel idea why don't we give George Washington, and Abraham Lincoln their own separate holiday, ala MLK Jr, and Caesar Chavez? Let's not waste time nor more money on Micheal Jackson!
If someone says that Washington had slaves, I would say which rich person in America or England didn't own slaves for economic survival in that era?

I grew up lovin' MJ. In 1993, I gave him the benefit of doubt. Several years ago I watched him win his trial and thought maybe it was right. When I heard him say at 44 it was the most beautiful thing in the world to sleep with children, (11, 12, 13 year old) I knew in my gut what I didn't want to believe before. Child abuse knows no racial bounds and being a Humanitarian does not trump it. I imagine all the victims of child abuse, like myself, agree. I hope MJ was ready to go and I pray for his family and the children of abuse all over the world.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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