President Donald Trump on Thursday responded to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) request to delay his State of the Union speech so long as the government remains shut down.
In a letter to Pelosi, Trump said he "postponed" an upcoming Congressional delegation to Afghanistan, Egypt, and Belgium, though he said Pelosi, a multi-millionaire, could still make the trip if she chooses to fly commercial. Pelosi was supposed to leave Thursday afternoon.
“We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the shutdown is over,” Trump wrote. “I also feel that, during this period, it would be better if you were in Washington negotiating with me and joining the Strong Border Security movement to end the shutdown.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders posted the letter to Twitter, in which "Madam Speaker" was misspelled.
President @realDonaldTrump’s letter to @SpeakerPelosi concerning her upcoming travel https://t.co/TtBCvwp080— Stephanie Grisham (@Stephanie Grisham)1547752358.0
The typo did not go unnoticed, and people doubt if Trump wrote the letter himself.
@jdawsey1 He didn't write that, "prerogative" is spelled correctly.— BoJTAC HorseDan (@BoJTAC HorseDan)1547752800.0
@jdawsey1 @ddale8 This was ghostwritten, notwithstanding the Widespread Superfluous Capitalization. The tell? "Sincerely" 🤥— HarrietTSpy (@HarrietTSpy)1547752706.0
@PressSec @realDonaldTrump @SpeakerPelosi ┳┻| ┻┳| ┳┻| ┳┻| ┻┳| ┳┻| ┳┻| ┻┳| ┳┻| ┻┳| ┳┻| ┻┳| ┳┻| _ ┻┳| •.•) It's spel… https://t.co/9lh0XqJ71N— Robert Maguire (@Robert Maguire)1547753485.0
@AdamParkhomenko Amateur tip: There's a difference between Madame and Madam. They fail at the simplest of things.— Straight Talker 🇺🇸 (@Straight Talker 🇺🇸)1547753435.0
@PressSec @realDonaldTrump @SpeakerPelosi It took you 24 hours to come up with that?— Ollie (@Ollie)1547752488.0
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), a key Trump ally, wrote on Twitter that Pelosi and Trump are acting "sophomoric," adding that Trump's decision to table Pelosi's trip is "inappropriate."
President Trump denying Speaker Pelosi military travel to visit our troops in Afghanistan, our allies in Egypt and… https://t.co/iApg80fJ1p— Lindsey Graham (@Lindsey Graham)1547755247.0
Some think Trump's response shows that Pelosi is getting under his skin.
The pettiness is real, especially considering Trump has yet to visit troops in Afghanistan.
I’ve been confident that Pelosi is winning for a while. This letter from Trump just confirms it. https://t.co/wMewBL5MR3— Adam Parkhomenko (@Adam Parkhomenko)1547752871.0
Pelosi was supposed to leave right now for her CoDel. This is a petty — and useless — move by POTUS. DoD is funded;… https://t.co/W7Gi4xEu7v— Angry Staffer (@Angry Staffer)1547755452.0
@AdamParkhomenko @lizzbeth5301 It's not a "win." A long-planned military based trip by the Speaker is being obstruc… https://t.co/tEvTE7bVqq— Jack C. Schoenholtz (@Jack C. Schoenholtz)1547754751.0
@AdamParkhomenko yep. Petty revenge 101. I can't give my speech, well you can't go on vacation. He thinks it's a tr… https://t.co/y63lgUgDXx— Kelly Shand (@Kelly Shand)1547753345.0
@AdamParkhomenko Trump: I know you are but what am I— Jody Edwards (@Jody Edwards)1547753338.0
@AdamParkhomenko No doubt. See that he says it's been postponed, then later suggests flying commercial? Well...… https://t.co/9cfzHlfYcf— John Thornton (@John Thornton)1547752995.0
If you thought this shutdown was close to being over, the House Speaker suggested the president cancel his address… https://t.co/WW7lRVGfuv— Kaitlan Collins (@Kaitlan Collins)1547753026.0
So is the hypocrisy.
Pelosi aide cites @POTUS visit to Afghanistan during shutdown and a GOP CODEL that proceeded without interference. https://t.co/mVN0Ddu2FB— Mark Knoller (@Mark Knoller)1547758480.0
To be clear, Trump just described an official trip to visit American service members in Afghanistan as “an excursio… https://t.co/RSA6nwnlgX— Christine Pelosi (@Christine Pelosi)1547754015.0
One White House official said the president has the right to suspend military travel, which would normally provide security for the Speaker, during a shutdown.
A White House official says all congressional CoDels will be canceled during shutdown, not just those involving Pelosi.— Noah Bierman (@Noah Bierman)1547753454.0
“We approve all these congressional trips that use government or military planes,” the official said. “That’s not new or anything. That’s just how it has always worked.”
Trump's saber-rattling may be moot, however, because the House and Senate have already canceled next week's recess, meaning Pelosi and the rest of Congress will be in Washington to continue pressuring Trump to reopen the government.
Trump's third shutdown is now in its 27th day. None of this is normal.