House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on President Donald Trump on Wednesday to delay making the State of the Union address or deliver it by writing due to the partial government shutdown.
“Sadly, given the security concerns and unless government re-opens this week, I suggest that we work together to determine another suitable date after government has re-opened for this address or for you to consider delivering your State of the Union address in writing to the Congress on January 29th,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to Trump.
The speaker noted that last September, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen designated State of the Union addresses as “National Special Security Events,” necessitating “the full resources of the Federal Government to be brought to bear.”
Today, I wrote to @realDonaldTrump recommending that we delay the State of the Union until after government re-opens, as the @SecretService, the lead federal agency for #SOTU security, faces its 26th day without funding. https://t.co/K2oL8WGvqo pic.twitter.com/g3fIlxDbbK
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) January 16, 2019
“The extraordinary demands presented by NSSEs require weeks of detailed planning with dozens of agencies working together to prepare for the safety of all participants,” the California Democrat wrote.
“However, both the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security have not been funded for 26 days now — with critical departments hamstrung by furloughs,” Pelosi said.
She further pointed out the State of the Union addresses were delivered in writing until the presidency of Woodrow Wilson in the early 1900s.
CNBC reported that the speaker suggested on Wednesday that Trump “can make it from the Oval Office if he wants.”
The president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., claimed the real reason Pelosi is calling for a delay is because she is “terrified” of the chief executive getting another chance to directly speak to the nation, following his Oval Office address regarding the shutdown and border security last week.
“Speaker Pelosi is clearly attempting to block my father from giving his State of the Union speech, not because 20 percent of the government is shut down, but because she is terrified of him having another opportunity to speak directly to the American people about her party’s obstruction, unfiltered and without her friends in the media running interference for her,” Trump Jr. told The Daily Caller.
“Pelosi correctly recognizes that the more President Trump shines a spotlight on the very real human tragedies that occur because of her and her party’s open border policies, the more of a political loser it becomes for them,” he added.
Daily Wire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro suggested that Trump deliver the speech from the U.S.-Mexico border instead of the Capitol and include Border Patrol agents and Angel Moms.
Trump should do a remote State of the Union from the border and feature Border Patrol agents and Angel Moms.
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) January 16, 2019
Fox Business host Charles Payne mocked Pelosi, tweeting, “Perhaps President Trump could order the addition of drones and sensors to make Speaker Pelosi feel safe enough to attend the State of the Union address.”
Perhaps President Trump could order the addition of drones and sensors to make Speaker Pelosi feel safe enough to attend the State of the Union address.#Justsaying
— Charles V Payne (@cvpayne) January 16, 2019
After Pelosi called a wall between nations “an immorality” last month, Trump noted that additional drones and other technology measures the speaker has supported will not, in themselves, physically stop anyone from crossing the border.
The president has requested $5.7 billion to build approximately 230 miles in new border barriers, while Democrats have offered $1.3 billion for border security but specified it cannot be used for a border wall.
Trump tweeted on Wednesday, “It is becoming more and more obvious that the Radical Democrats are a Party of open borders and crime.”
It is becoming more and more obvious that the Radical Democrats are a Party of open borders and crime. They want nothing to do with the major Humanitarian Crisis on our Southern Border. #2020!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 16, 2019
He continued, “They want nothing to do with the major Humanitarian Crisis on our Southern Border.”
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