Nancy Pelosi wearing her pin
Source: Getty

Nancy Pelosi Wears a Distinctive Pin—Here’s What It Means

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Sep. 30 2021, Published 2:51 p.m. ET

The Speaker of the House, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, has made news headlines plenty of times during her long career in Congress. Since 2003, Pelosi has served as either the House Minority Leader or the Speaker of the House, which makes her one of the uppermost legislators in Washington, D.C.

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Speaker Pelosi is well-known not only for her political beliefs and for a certain fashion statement that illustrates her powerful place in Congress. A pin that she has worn on many notable occasions over the years has been called her “power pin” by The New York Times, particularly after she wore it during the debate in 2019 about Trump’s first impeachment.

The symbolism of Pelosi’s pin

As the Times reported in December 2019, the pin is a representation of the staff that's symbolic of the House’s legislative authority. The mace contains 13 rods bundled together, which look like a dagger topped by a globe and an American bald eagle.

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Nancy Pelosi wearing her pin
Source: Getty

Each component of the official mace drips with symbolism. The 13 rods represent the 13 original colonies, while the globe signifies the world and the eagle is a continued symbol of American freedom.

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Pelosi has often been seen wearing her distinctive pin, which is a modern interpretation of the Mace of the House of Representatives (also called the Mace of the Republic).

Who created the mace pin that Pelosi wears?

Pelosi’s pin was designed and made by Ann Hand, a Texas-based jewelry maker who specializes in bipartisan, patriotic pieces. Hand is married to Lloyd Hand, who served as chief of protocol to President Lyndon B. Johnson.

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Hand calls herself “the nation’s jeweler” and has designed jewelry pieces for the White House, the State Department, the Department of Justice, the American Red Cross, and many other organizations. A bestseller is an American Eagle brooch. Her site states she is “passionate about telling American history in a wearable art form.”

In February 2020, Hand told Texas Monthly that she designed the iconic pin when Pelosi was first Speaker of the House between 2007 and 2011. She said she was “shocked” to see the pin on Pelosi during a House vote on a Trump impeachment.

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The pin designed by Hand is made of brass with a gold overlay and a pearl or fake pearl to serve as the globe. It retails for $125 and became hugely popular following Pelosi’s opening of the articles of impeachment in December 2019.

Events when Pelosi wore the mace pin

Pelosi has worn her pin to make a statement on more than one key occasion in Congress.

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nancy pelosi pin
Source: Getty

At President Trump’s 2017 State of the Union speech, she wore it along with her cream-colored suit. The women of Congress wore shades of white that evening in support of women's issues.

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Her pin was visible during an interview discussing Trump having called her “vindictive” and a “disgrace” in an interview in Normandy.

She also wore the pin in October 2019 during a press conference announcing that she and Rep. Adam Schiff were moving forward with articles of impeachment.

At the 2020 State of the Union address, Pelosi wore the mace pin when she infamously ripped up President Trump’s speech in anger.

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