It’s a formality, really, that befalls all Speakers. The SOTU address is a constitutional requirement, but historically, presidents have delivered them in writing to Congress.
On Wednesday, Pelosi wrote the president again to suggest he do just that, all but rescinding her earlier invitation.
Well, security concerns, of course.
In an interview with reporters on Capitol Hill, the Speaker said:
It's an event of special security. And so these people are not working. And we've never really had a state of the union when the government has been in shutdown since the Budget Act in the 70s. So this is -- this is respectfully and sadly, proudly I invited to come, privileged to invite him to come. But the government is shut down. The people who are -- we would have the President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, the entire Congress of the United States, House and Senate, the Supreme Court, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Cabinet of the United States. Did I say that? And the diplomatic corp, all in the same room.
This requires hundreds of people working on the logistics and security of it. Most of those people are either furloughed or victims of the shutdown. The president's shutdown. But that isn't the point. The point is security.
Actually, Pelosi owns the shut down now because she is refusing even to meet with POTUS Trump to discuss the president’s border wall funding, which is something she has voted for in the past. And isn’t it odd that she’s suddenly concerned about security for the president’s SOTU address, but isn’t at all concerned about security along the U.S.-Mexico border?
Nevertheless, it’s obvious this is nothing but a cheap political stunt. To even suggest that the president, at any time and under any circumstance, would not be adequately protected is absurd. But apparently some focus group told her to make the case because it would resonate with the Democrats’ far-Left, Trump-hating base. (Related: Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi cheers disease, saying, “Let’s hear it for more pre-existing medical conditions!”)
As for her security argument, she’s the only one making it; the agencies responsible for the president’s security — DHS and its subordinate entity, the Secret Service — have pushed back hard against her claim.
As reported by The National Sentinel, two #NeverTrump media outlets, CNN and NBC News, both have reported that Homeland Security and Secret Service officials have said that security planning for the SOTU address did not begin when Pelosi sent the president the invitation earlier this month.
“Secret Service is fully ready to offer full protection during the #SOTU, a sr. law enforcement official tells @petewilliamsnbc. "It's a no-fail mission," the official says. Though USSS personnel are not being paid, the intelligence & protection functions are fully staffed.,” NBC’s Peter Alexander tweeted.
"We've been planning for this for months, as we always do. It didn't start up 29 days ago," the official said.
“A senior DHS official tells me that Speaker Pelosi’s claim regarding security concerns surrounding the State of the Union during a shutdown has “zero” credibility... “It is a serious event but one we can handle,” tweeted CNN’s Elizabeth Landers.
Fox News’ Cortney O’Brien also noted that DHS officials said “no one from Pelosi’s office called the Secret Service to ask if they had concerns about SOTU before she sent that letter.”
Republicans called Pelosi out for the letter, correctly describing it as a stunt. But one GOP senator, John Kennedy of Louisiana, said it would backfire. “Politically, it’s great for us,” he said.
Read more about libtard Democratic tactics by Pelosi and others at Libtards.news.