President Donald Trump slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for tearing up his State of the Union address on Tuesday evening, saying the move was both disrespectful and unlawful.
“I thought it was a terrible thing,” President Trump told White House pool reporters ahead of a planned speech in North Carolina on Friday. “It’s illegal what she did. She broke the law.” The president then said it was “very illegal” for the speech to have been ripped up because they were official government documents, and it was “very disrespectful to the chamber, to the country.” He then told reporters that he was unaware of Pelosi’s conduct until a lawmaker told him about it as he exited the House chamber.
President Trump: "I thought it was a terrible thing when she ripped up the speech. First of all, it's an official document. You're not allowed. It's illegal what she did. She broke the law." pic.twitter.com/Co1j7ljpGU
— CSPAN (@cspan) February 7, 2020
Pelosi has faced blowback over the act, even prompting calls from Republican lawmakers for her to be censured. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) announced Wednesday hat he will lodge an ethics complaint against Pelosi and will join Reps. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) and Kay Granger (R-TX) in filing a resolution for the speaker to be censured. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) is expected to also file a measure to censure Pelosi for her “classless outburst.”
Appearing this week on Fox & Friends, Vice President Mike Pence suggested that the speaker had premeditated ripping up the speech.
“Pelosi, in the final moments, tried to make it about her,” he said. “And I think the American people see through it. I think they see through the pettiness, they see through the politics of all of it.”