Who knew that singer John Legend and his model/cookbook author wife Chrissy Teigen were advisers to House Democrats? The celebrity couple was hosted by Speaker Nancy Pelosi at an annual three-day policy retreat held in Leesburg, Virginia last week. Pelosi refers to the two of them as long-time supporters of hers and the Democrat Party.
Pelosi introduced Legend and Teigen Wednesday during the retreat’s opening night. Political commentator and Elle Magazine contributor Melissa Harris-Perry moderated a panel discussion with them that ran about an hour. You may remember Harris-Perry from her time hosting her own show on MSNBC. She infamously wore a pair of tampon earrings during one show to protest a bill signed by then-Governor Rick Perry in Texas banning late-term abortion. John Legend credits his wife with an astute sense of who exactly Donald Trump is and was even before he ran for president.
According to The Hill, Democrats are meant to discuss their legislative agenda for the year at the annual gathering, and Teigen and Legend were there to kick off the opening night. At the panel, which was moderated by political commentator and ELLE contributor Melissa Harris-Perry, Legend told the crowd that Teigen “knew well before a lot of America did that [Trump] was a joke and a conman and a clown.” He continued, “She was prescient long before he ever thought about running for president. She was on point with that.”
After weighing in on topics such as President Trump’s immigration policy, the press was ushered out. The panel discussion had been relatively uneventful while the press was present, as the reporting goes. Then things got a little spicy as the power couple began to toss around the f-word. Harris-Perry asked Chrissy what word women should say more often. Nancy Pelosi is fond of saying that women should say “non” more often than they do. Teigen replied, “F— you.” Classy, right?
Teigen was able to work in some criticism of First Daughter and presidential adviser Ivanka Trump, too, as it pertained to immigration policy. She mocked Ivanka’s photos on Instagram of her children. Instead of blaming the decisions made by parents trying to illegally enter America, she blames the Trump administration for the parents’ actions.
Teigen told the crowd on Wednesday, “When it comes from people, like Ivanka, I will say, that can post all day pictures of her children that are just in her home and, ‘Oh my daughter is having trouble in her crib,’ or ‘My daughter is doing this,’ and ‘My daughter is doing this,’ there are children out there that don’t have that opportunity. There are children that are completely … honestly, I cannot fathom for a second how scared our children would be if they were without us.”
The couple is represented in Washington by Trump deranged Rep. Ted Lieu. As I wrote of him earlier this week, part of his district is Beverly Hills and the homes of lots of celebrities. They gave a shout-out to him. “Teigen started raising the roof, shouting “Ted, Ted, Ted”, according to Politico.
The retreat was to unify the party members and discuss their policy agenda going forward while marking the first 100 days of leadership in the House. These two celebrities were red meat for the audience but certainly did little to add to policy discussion. Pelosi was busy, though, answering questions about President Trump’s suggestion that illegal immigrants could be shipped to sanctuary cities (she’s against it) and on Rep. Omar’s latest Twitter ugliness. Of Omar, she told reporters she hadn’t spoken to her yet but “it’s her practice to “call them in before I call them out.”
Some Congressmen took the opportunity to take selfies with Legend and Teigen. Rep. Adam Schiff, a fellow Californian did so while joking he may delete it later. He hasn’t. It “felt cute”.