President Donald Trump on Friday made a blatant attempt to dodge a bombshell story published Thursday on BuzzFeed revealing that he instructed his former personal lawyer Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about a Trump hotel in Moscow. Instead of addressing the allegations, Trump decided that it was better to issue an angry tweet blasting the House Speaker. It didn’t go well.
“Why would Nancy Pelosi leave the Country with other Democrats on a seven day excursion when 800,000 great people are not getting paid,” he wrote. “Also, could somebody please explain to Nancy & her “big donors” in wine country that people working on farms (grapes) will have easy access in!”
Trump and Nancy Pelosi are engaged in the bitter opposite of negotiations over the partial government shutdown, now in its 28th day, over Trump’s proposed border wall.
After Pelosi suggested that Trump should reschedule his State of the Union address amid the government shutdown, Trump on Thursday denied her a military plane for a congressional trip to visit U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
Of course, his move has nothing to do with the shutdown as trump himself visited troops in Iraq since the shutdown began, as did a congressional delegation led by Republican Representative Lee Zeldin of New York.
Democrats questioned whether Trump had the authority to control congressional travel.
“We believe this is completely inappropriate by the president,” said House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff of California, who had intended to accompany Pelosi. “As far as we can tell this hasn’t happened in the annals of congressional history.”
Pelosi’s spokesman Drew Hammill said in a statement that the purpose of the trip was to “express appreciation and thanks to our men and women in uniform for their service and dedication, and to obtain critical national security and intelligence briefings from those on the front lines.”
In Congress, the House has passed a number of bills that would reopen the government, but Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-Kentucky) has refused to hold Senate votes on any of them because of Trump’s opposition.
You can read Trump’s tweet and some of the responses below:
Why would Nancy Pelosi leave the Country with other Democrats on a seven day excursion when 800,000 great people are not getting paid. Also, could somebody please explain to Nancy & her “big donors” in wine country that people working on farms (grapes) will have easy access in!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 18, 2019
As expected, Twitter responded, and it wasn’t pretty.
Why did you travel to Iraq while 800,000 Americans were not being paid? Why did Melania travel to Mar-a-Lago while 800,000 Americans were not being paid? Answer that before you question others!
— Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) January 18, 2019
So according to the president of the United States it’s more important for the first lady to party it up then it is for the speaker of the house to travel to a war zone.
— Brian Krassenstein (@krassenstein) January 18, 2019
a.) @SpeakerPelosi deserves to be referred to by you with her title
b.) She was going to a war zone you have been too afraid to visit
c.) She was doing her job
d.) While denying her the plane, you gave one to your wife to go on vacay
e.) This will not distract from your crimes
— David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf) January 18, 2019
Why would you dismiss a visit to our troops in Afghanistan as an "excursion" while lending Air Force One to Melania for a lavish Florida vacation… paid for by taxpayers… during a government shutdown?
— William LeGate (@williamlegate) January 18, 2019
How much did Melania’s flight to Florida cost last night?
— Declan Cashin (@Tweet_Dec) January 18, 2019
Why did you instruct your subordinate to lie, under oath, to Congress regarding the Trump Tower Moscow project? Why is a felon still in office?
Remember when Nixon resigned for a filing cabinet break-in? That's peanuts compared to the revelations over the past few days…
— William LeGate (@williamlegate) January 18, 2019
The White House thought it was cool to send Melania Trump to Mar-A-Lago — that’s an actual vacation — on a military plane after blocking Pelosi from going to see the troops. But nobody loves the military more, amirite?
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) January 18, 2019
(2/4) Donald Trump and Republicans need to stop lying to the American people. Democrats don’t want open borders, terrorists are not crossing the southern border and we have a barrier in place already. We need more monitoring security and personnel, not a wall
— ♻️🇺🇸 Christopher Zullo (@ChrisJZullo) January 18, 2019
Mr. Art of the Deal turns out just to be an immature racist rube.
— Anita Creamer (@AnitaCreamer) January 18, 2019
Trump has much bigger fish to fry than worrying about Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Afghanistan to visit our brave troops overseas. We have an unindicted co-conspirator in the White House who must be impeached and maybe even imprisoned if he doesn’t resign ahead of time.
— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) January 18, 2019
7 day excursion? The Speaker was going to Afghanistan to visit the troops. Something you failed to do for 2 yrs until you were shamed into it.
— Andrew Goss ✊USAF✊ (@Goss30Goss) January 18, 2019
Why would you have gone to Iraq for a photo op when you cut the salaries of vets? Why would your wife fly on a gov't plane to your for-profit, emoluments violating country club in Fl? Why would you instruct your fixer to lie to Congress? You're a traitor. And demented. Resign. pic.twitter.com/nyrhzdhfT1
— Lesley Abravanel (@lesleyabravanel) January 18, 2019
Why should Melania be able to use government resources for vacation when government officials can’t do to the shut down
— Jeff Delanoy (@jeffdelanoy) January 18, 2019
To meet with troops and NATO commanders, the kinds of things a president would do if we had one.
— Great Scott! 🇺🇸 (@ScottFrazier19) January 18, 2019
What is your response?