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Trump cancels Speaker Pelosi’s Afghanistan visit

Trump cancels Speaker Pelosi’s Afghanistan visit

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On
Jan 18, 2019 - 13:55

WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): US President Donald Trump has cancelled House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Afghanistaninfo-icon --- a move widely seen as a tit-for-tat response of the president to reschedule his State of the Union Address on January 29.

“Due to the shutdown, I am sorry to inform you that your trip to Brussels, Egypt, and Afghanistan has been postponed. We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the shutdown is over,” Trump wrote in a letter to Pelosi, a copy of which was released to the press.

“In light of the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay, I am sure you would agree that,” Trump said in his letter, a day after Pelosi in her letter to the president sought to postpone the January 29th State of the Union Address to a Joint Session of the Congress.

 In her letter, Pelosi had cited the ongoing partial government shutdown, now into its record 27th day, and the inability of the Secret Service and other law enforcement agencies to provide security to such an event.

Trump told Pelosi that postponing this public relations event is totally appropriate.

“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. Obviously, if you would like to make your journey by flying commercial, that would certainly be your prerogative,” Trump said.

“I look forward to seeing you soon and even more forward to watching our open and dangerous Southern Border finally receive the attention, funding, and security it so desperately deserves!” Trump said in his letter.

Drew Hammill, spokesman for Pelosi, said that the Congressional Delegation to Afghanistan included a required stop in Brussels for pilot rest.  

In Brussels, the delegation was scheduled to meet with top NATOinfo-icon commanders, US military leaders and key allies – to affirm the United States’ ironclad commitment to the NATO alliance.

 “The purpose of the trip was to express appreciation and thanks to our men and womeninfo-icon in uniform for their service and dedication, and to obtain critical national security and intelligence briefings from those on the front lines,” Hammill said.

 “The President traveled to Iraq during the Trump Shutdown as did a Republican CODEL led by Rep. Zeldin,” he said.

“We believe this is completely inappropriate by the President. We’re not going to allow the President of the United States to tell the Congress it can’t fulfill its oversight responsibilities, it can’t ensure that our troops have what they need whether our government is open or closed,” Congressman Adam Schiff, Chairman of the powerful House Intelligence Committee, told reporters.

“I think it’s vitally important now, in particular that the President has announced withdrawals from Syria and Afghanistan, that we understand the situation on the ground,” Schiff said.

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