Democrat Roy Herron Says DCCC Pulled Funds When He Refused to Support Pelosi

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi doesn't face strong opposition in her bid for re-election, but as one of Congress's most influential power-brokers - and a strong ally of President Obama - she has faced increased scrutiny and criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike. Charles Dharapak

Nancy Pelosi
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
Charles Dharapak

Tennessee House candidate Roy Herron, who faces a tight campaign for the seat of retiring Democrat John Tanner, is accusing the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) of pulling funding after he said he wouldn't support Nancy Pelosi for Speaker of the House.

"This morning, The Jackson Sun [a local paper] reported for the first time what I've repeatedly told citizens: I will not vote for Nancy Pelosi for House speaker," Herron said in a statement Tuesday, The Hill reports. "If the DCCC pulling ads is the price of independence and following my conscience, so be it. That's the kind of congressman I'll be."

Herron, who is battling Republican Stephen Fincher for the seat, is one of an increasing number of Democrats who is campaigning against congressional leadership in the face of anti-Washington sentiment. CBSNews.com currently rates the race as "edge  GOP."

"The people of my district are independent-minded folks who put patriotism above partisanship and are not looking to hire a yes-man for either party," Herron said in a statement on Tuesday. "We need new leadership in Washington -- not Nancy Pelosi or the Republican John Boehner of Ohio either, because both have let these deficits soar and have let our people down."

Alabama's Bobby Bright released an ad last week proclaiming his anti-Pelosi vote, and a number of other representatives have more quietly refused to ally themselves with the speaker. Representatives Gene Taylor, of Miss., and Idaho's Walt Minnick have also actively distanced themselves from Pelosi on the campaign trail.

Pelosi, for her part, says she doesn't take the negative remarks personally.

"I just want them to win," she said last month, in an appearance on PBS.

The DCCC did not respond to a request for comment.

CBSNews.com Special Report: Election 2010
Lucy Madison
Lucy Madison is a political reporter for CBSNews.com. You can read more of her posts here. Follow Hotsheet on Facebook and Twitter.

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