WASHINGTON – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is continuing her spat with President Donald Trump, rejecting his plan to deliver the State of the Union Address next Tuesday before the House of Representatives.
Trump had said today he was still planning to come and give the address, but Pelosi says he's not welcome in the House chamber "until government has opened."
It's the latest development in the ongoing tit for tat showdown between the two opposing leaders.
Pelosi had initially issued the usual invitation for Trump to speak in the House. But then, citing security concerns, the California Democrat said earlier this month that critical agencies like the Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security have been affected by the government shutdown.
"The US Secret Service was designated as the lead federal agency responsible for coordinating, planning, exercising, and implementing security for National Special Security Events…" Pelosi wrote. "However, both the US Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security have not been funded for 26 days now – with critical departments hamstrung by furloughs."
However, in a letter released Wednesday, the president assured the House speaker there was nothing to be concerned about.
"I was contacted by the Department of Homeland Security and the United States Secret Service to explain that there would be absolutely no problem regarding security with respect to the event," he wrote. "They have since confirmed this publicly."
"Therefore, I will be honoring your invitation, and fulfilling my constitutional duty, to deliver important information to the people and Congress of the United States of America…" the president said.
He went on to say that "it would be so very sad for our Country if the State of the Union were not delivered on time, on schedule, and very importantly, on location!"
But Pelosi is essentially telling the president to forget about it.