View from the Left: America finally got its 'adult in the room'
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi doesn’t have time to worry about the fact that Donald Trump snubbed her on the dais at the State of the Union address. Customarily, the speaker gavels the chamber to order and introduces a president before she or he begins orating. But as Pelosi stood with gavel in hand, Trump simply dove right into his torturously long harangue.
“Who really cares,” Pelosi reportedly told her colleagues Wednesday morning when asked about the slight. She was more concerned about the conduct of her own charges. “I do want to applaud our entire caucus for the decorum. I thought you were very, very respectful of the office that he holds, respectful of the position that we have.” Pelosi is clearly devoted to ceremony and tradition, but she’s applying what might be called some basic sandbox wisdom to her interactions with Trump. Chief among them is, “You do you, because you can’t control what the other kids do.” Another sandbox axiom to live by: Pick your battles.
And returning fire on Trump’s petty antics isn’t among them. But Trump trying to bully Democrats out of performing their constitutional duties? Yeah, that counts.
“It was an all-out threat,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pointedly told reporters Wednesday morning of Trump’s warning against investigating him. “The president should not bring threats to the floor of the House. He said he wasn’t going to cooperate unless we didn’t exercise our constitutional responsibility to oversight.”
Later that day, Democrats would launch what promises to be a gusher of vigorous investigations into Trump and the corruption that’s coursing through his administration. The House Intelligence Committee, in particular, announced a renewed probe that will be less focused on the Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia than on the many financial entanglements that make Trump and his inner circle vulnerable to Russian influence and potentially guilty of wrongdoing. The Judiciary panel also proceeded to hold a contentious hearing in which acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker proved to be less cooperative than some terrorists typically are, according to one former FBI official.