A news report says that President Trump's cancelling a military plane for Speaker Nancy Pelosi's overseas trip has sparked "anger, confusion" on Capitol Hill.
The last minute cancellation is seen as President Trump's revenge for Speaker Pelosi's trying to cancel his State of the Union address.
Democratic Rep. Steny Hoyer found the President's action "petty" and "small," while Senator Lindsey Graham was appalled, tweeting:
One sophomoric response does not deserve another. Speaker Pelosi’s threat to cancel the State of the Union is very irresponsible and blatantly political.
President Trump denying Speaker Pelosi military travel to visit our troops in Afghanistan, our allies in Egypt and NATO is also inappropriate.
I admire Senator Graham, but I think he's missing an important point: What the heck was the Speaker of the House doing embarking on a foreign trip during a government shutdown?
It is always a good thing to thank our troops (with a stop off in Brussel–I'm told the food there is to die for). So the rationale for Speaker Pelosi's trip was readily understandable. But not the timing.
That Ms. Pelosi and other Democrats (also on the trip were Reps. Adam Schiff and Eliot Engel) didn't feel it important to be in town right now gives away the truth: they have no intention of negotiating a way out of the shutdown.
Sure, they shed crocodile tears for the 800,000 government employees whose paychecks are delayed, but skipping town right now betrays a lack of seriousness.
President Trump's letter to Ms. Pelosi was businesslike and excellent. Read it here.
Meanwhile, the President also has cancelled sending a U.S. delegation to Davos in Switzerland for the World Economic Forum.
Two years ago, technology think tanker Robert D. Atkinson described the Davos gathering this way:
. . . ?an elites-only event that brings together corporate CEOs, heads of state, and a lucky few others deemed interesting enough to diversify things (whom WEF labels “social entrepreneurs,” “global shapers,” “young global leaders,” “technology pioneers,” and “Matt Damon”). There are many other such exclusive salons where global elites gather to cogitate about the world’s problems?—?from the Atlantic Council’s Global Strategy Forum to the Aspen Ideas Festival to the Jackson Hole Economic Policy Summit?—?but Davos is the unquestioned pinnacle. If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere. You better start preparing now, though.
It is entirely possible that missing Davos one year will not be fatal to the republic. It will certainly save the taxpayers some $$$, as cavorting with the world's richest and most powerful doesn't come cheap. Here is a story on the lavish lifestyle of a Davos attendee.