On Wednesday evening, President Donald Trump announced he would deliver his State of the Union address once the partial government shutdown ends.

The development shows Trump ultimately succumbed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosis (D-Calif.) request to delay the speech until the shutdown is over or deliver it in writing, and thus marks a victory of sorts for Pelosi. The president had retaliated against Pelosi by abruptly canceling her planned trip to Afghanistan.

“As the Shutdown was going on, [Speaker] Nancy Pelosi asked me to give the State of the Union Address,” Trump tweeted late Wednesday night. “I agreed. She then changed her mind because of the Shutdown, suggesting a later date. This is her prerogative — I will do the Address when the Shutdown is over.”

The president added he was not seeking an “alternative venue” for the State of the Union speech — which had been scheduled for Tuesday (Jan. 29) — despite previous suggestions of this.


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Just hours before his announcement, Trump wrote a letter to Pelosi saying he would give his SOTU address as planned at the Capitol on Tuesday.

“Nancy Pelosi — or Nancy, as I call her — she doesn’t want to hear the truth,” Trump told reporters at the White House, calling Pelosi’s decision “a great, great horrible mark” for the country.

“I don’t believe it’s ever happened before. And it’s always good to be a part of history, but this is a very negative part of history,” he added.

The shutdown entered its 34th day on Thursday. Around 800,000 federal workers remain furloughed or without pay as the congressional stalemate over border wall funding and illegal immigration continues. Trump has demanded $5.7 billion for the steel barrier.

On Thursday, the Senate is set to vote on legislation to end the shutdown, although it is highly expected that the Republican-controlled upper chamber of Congress — led by Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the majority leader — will reject the Democratic-controlled House’s package yet again. Pelosi responded to Trump’s tweet Wednesday by saying she hoped he would support the House’s bill.


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