North Carolina has put in a bid to host President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address, saying it would be good to take the speech “outside of the nation’s gilded capital.”
Trump is scheduled to give the annual address to a joint session of Congress on Jan. 29. However, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made waves last week by saying Trump should give it from the Oval Office, or just send it in writing, due to security concerns due to the government shutdown, Fox News reported.
The White House has made no formal response to Pelosi’s comments, although the Secret Service and Department of Homeland Security have both said the Capitol can be made secure for the speech.
Trump tweeted a response to Pelosi Sunday that did not tip his hand.
Nancy, I am still thinking about the State of the Union speech, there are so many options – including doing it as per your written offer (made during the Shutdown, security is no problem), and my written acceptance. While a contract is a contract, I’ll get back to you soon!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 20, 2019
For Tim Moore, the Republican speaker of North Carolina’s state House of Representatives, the issue is not security as much as symbolism.
“I attended your first State of the Union address in Washington D.C. last year,” Moore wrote Trump in a letter. “It was an unforgettable experience to witness this tradition of our commander-in-chief’s speech to a joint session of Congress.”
Moore then came to the crux of his argument.
“I also believe taking your message outside of the nation’s gilded capital to a state government venue reflects the priorities of your administration, and those of our Congress, to create success not only for federal institutions and programs but for the American people they serve,” he wrote.
Moore said North Carolina would be the perfect place for Trump to address the nation.
“North Carolina, like Washington D.C., has a balanced government that provides opportunity for all voices to be heard through dialogue rather than division. Our rapidly growing state is one of the 10 most populous in the nation and a welcoming place for all, including more than a million active-duty members of the military and brave veterans,” Moore wrote.
“During this critical period for leaders of our country to listen to one another, reach compromises on disagreements, and resolve to work together to reopen our nation’s government, it is essential that citizens of the United States hear directly from their elected President on these efforts,” he wrote.
North Carolina’s invitation followed one from Michigan, inviting Trump to give his address there.
“There is no higher loyalty or obligation than to the people we serve and the communities we represent, and no partisan gamesmanship should stand in the way of that service,” new state House Speaker Lee Chatfield wrote in his letter to the president.
“Because of that, this chamber and this speaker are willing to put people before politics for this important occasion.”
Chatfield said Michigan is different from Washington because the two parties there work together to resolve problems.
“Even though we disagree, we will always work together to improve the lives of our local families and seniors, because we have a solemn responsibility to do so. However, because some have chosen to stand in the way of your official duties, we would be honored to host you in our Capitol for this necessary address to our nation,” Chatfield wrote.
“Washington, D.C. may be bogged down in partisan politics, but Michigan is different. Michigan helped build this country, and we know how to get things done,” he wrote. “In the Great Lakes state, we roll up our sleeves and work hard every day.
“That includes working collaboratively, regardless of party, and together we can prove it to the rest of the country.”
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