Before a joint session of Congress, President Donald Trump delivered his very first State of the Union address on Tuesday. But some lawmakers in attendance didn’t seem to be all that interested in what he had to say.
The U.K. Daily Mail pointed out that Democrat Rep. Brenda Lawrence of Michigan was clearly playing “Candy Crush” — a popular mobile game — on her phone while Trump was talking about international trade.
A Getty photo taken at about 9:42 p.m. showed Lawrence, who is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, playing the game. Moreover, the two congresswomen sitting to her left — fellow caucus members — were also focused on their cellphones.
“The era of economic surrender is totally over,” Trump was reportedly saying as the photo was taken. “From now on, we expect trading relationships to be fair and, very importantly, reciprocal.”
An enlarged version of the photo confirmed that Lawrence was indeed playing Candy Crush.
Meanwhile, the congresswoman in the middle of the photo, Ohio Democrat Rep. Joyce Beatty, seemed to be looking over a yet-to-be-published news release responding to Trump’s speech before he was even finished talking.
A spokesperson for Beatty later told The Daily Mail that lawmakers were given copies of the president’s planned remarks beforehand.
“That State of the Union is put out an hour in advance so Democrats and Republicans can read along,” the spokesperson said. “And while the speech was going on, she was putting together a statement in response.”
Finally, New Jersey Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman — seen in the far left part of the photo, looked to be scrolling through the responses to a tweet she had put out during the address, in which she claimed Trump surrounds himself with “white nationalists.”
As of Thursday afternoon, none of the congresswomen pictured in the photo — with the exception of Beatty — had publicly addressed what exactly they were doing during the State of the Union speech.
Within hours of Trump concluding his address, though, Lawrence was already criticizing what he said.
“When you know his policies and the things he has said and the disrespect, I cannot connect the words to the person standing there,” she told The Detroit News. “He kept talking about us as Americans. I don’t feel like I’m his America. I’m been feeling that way for a long time.”
Meanwhile, as noted by The Hill, other Democrats also expressed their disapproval with the presidents’ remarks.
Many Democrats sat together and refused to clap when Trump talked about his accomplishments, like the passage of the historic tax reform bill late last month.
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