Pelosi Urges Trump to Reschedule State of the Union Address

President Donald Trump delivers an address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday, February 28, 2017, at the U.S. Capitol. This is the President's first Address to Congress of his presidency.

President Donald Trump delivers an address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday, February 28, 2017, at the U.S. Capitol. This is the President's first Address to Congress of his presidency. Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wrote a letter to President Trump urging him that he should find another date to give his State of the Union address or deliver his speech to Congress in writing. Pelosi mentioned that the reason for postponing or writing the address instead of giving it orally were “security concerns.” So far the State of the Union address is scheduled for January 29th.

Rescheduling?

The annual State of the Union address, which is nationally televised, is currently scheduled for January 29th. On Wednesday House Speaker Nancy Pelosi asked President Trump to reschedule his address or give a written copy to Congress on the 29th. “He can make it from the Oval Office if he wants,” Pelosi told reporters later. [1]

Security Concerns

Pelosi cited security concerns, which are related to the government’s partial shutdown, to be the reason the President needs to change his plans. In her letter, she stated that “Both the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security have not been funded for 26 days now.”

Pelosi also managed to bring up the fact that since 1977 no State of the Union address has been given during a government shutdown. There have been, however, multiple presidents who have given their State of the Union address in writing. The last president to submit solely a written State of the Union address was Jimmy Carter in January 1981. [2]

Government Shutdown

The government shutdown is now on its 26th day and Democrats and President Trump remain at an impasse over Trump’s demands for a wall. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi continues to refuse money for the wall and Trump continues to refuse to re-open the government. [3]

“Sadly, given the security concerns and unless the government re-opens this week,” Pelosi wrote, “I suggest that we work together to determine another suitable date after the government has re-opened for this address or for your to consider delivering your State of the Union address in writing to Congress on January 29th.”

 


Notes:

  1. ^Mangan, Dan. “Nancy Pelosi to Trump: Reschedule State of the Union address or just submit it in writing to Congress because of shutdown.” CNBC, 16 Jan. 2019, www.cnbc.com/2019/01/16/pelosi-to-trump-reschedule-state-of-union-or-submit-in-writing.html. (go back↩)
  2. ^Collins, Eliza and David Jackson. “Citing ‘security concerns’ due to government shutdown, Speaker Pelosi urges delay of State of the Union address.” USA TODAY, 16 Jan. 2019, www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/01/16/government-shutdown-nancy-pelosi-wants-delay-state-union/2591620002. (go back↩)
  3. ^By Catherine Lucey, Jill Colvin and Lisa Mascaro. “Trump feels shutdown pressure from economists, Nancy Pelosi.” Alton Telegraph, 16 Jan. 2019, www.thetelegraph.com/news/article/Congress-prepares-to-skip-planned-recess-if-13537259.php. (go back↩)

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