In the wake of the rip heard around the world — a reference to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’ tearing up of President Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech in full view of television cameras — the president personally addressed the situation on Friday.
According to Breitbart, Trump told reporters on Friday that Pelosi ripping up the SOTU speech was not only “very illegal” but also claimed that the Speaker “broke the law.”
“I thought it was a terrible thing,” the president told White House reporters. “It’s illegal what she did. She broke the law.”
Trump doubled down, saying not only was the ripping illegal, but also disrespectful — echoing statements from his Republican allies in Congress who blasted Pelosi for tearing up a document that had the names of Trump’s prominent guests that night,.
Trump said the move was “very disrespectful to the chamber, to the country.”
You can watch Trump’s question and answer session with White House pool reporters in the video below:
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
The Speaker received massive blowback after she ripped up the speech, with several Republican lawmakers and senators demanding that she be held accountable for her actions. Rep. Matt Gaetz made headlines on Wednesday after he filed a formal ethics complaint against Pelosi.
Other Republican lawmakers banded together to push to formally censure Pelosi for tearing up the speech.
Vice President Mike Pence also weighed in on the matter during an interview on Fox & Friends, claiming that Pelosi had planned on tearing up the document regardless of claims from her office that it wasn’t a premeditated move.
“Pelosi, in the final moments, tried to make it about her,” Pence 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.”