Trump Moves Ahead With State Of The Union Despite Nancy Pelosi's Request For Delay Amid Shutdown
President Trump wants to crash Congress.
The White House on Tuesday requested a formal rehearsal for Trump’s State of the Union address scheduled for next week — even though Speaker Nancy Pelosi asked the President put it off amid the government shutdown stalemate caused by his border wall obsession.
The administration made the request for a “walk-through” of the Jan. 29 address in an email to the House Sergeant-of-Arms office, according to a White House official.
The annual speech in the House has to be approved by both chambers of Congress, and Pelosi (D-Calif.) sent a letter to Trump last week urging him to postpone out of concern for the Department of Homeland Security personnel who would have to work the event despite still going without pay because of the shutdown, which entered its 32nd day Tuesday.
A spokesman for Pelosi did not immediately return a request for comment and neither did a representative for the House Sergeant-at-Arms.
Trump could feasibly make the speech in the Senate, but that would also require a resolution passed by both congressional chambers, which appears unlikely as Pelosi signaled her opposition in last week’s letter. As a last resort, Trump could ostensibly deliver the esteemed address from the White House or some other location.
After Pelosi’s request for a delay, Trump pulled a military jet chartered for a congressional delegation trip to Afghanistan that the speaker was supposed to take. The President broke confidentiality protocol by publicly announcing the trip, which had been kept secret out of security concern.
Pelosi then tried to go on the trip by flying commercial, but the White House leaked her travel plans, prompting rebuke from the speaker’s office that the President was deliberately putting her safety at risk.
The political tit-for-tat comes as the longest government shutdown in U.S. history appears nowhere near an end.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) — who has refused to act on any of the government-reopening bills passed by the House — told reporters Tuesday afternoon he plans to on Thursday introduce a spending measure rubber-stamped by Trump that would put up $5.7 billion for a border wall in exchange for reinstating temporary immigrant protections ensured by the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Temporary Protected Status programs.
McConnell and Trump have dubbed the measure a “compromise,” but Dems have balked at that characterization, noting the President himself rescinded or drastically curtailed the immigration programs he’s now willing to extend.
With News Wire Services
This article is written by Chris Sommerfeldt from New York Daily News and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.