By Susan Heavey and Susan Cornwell
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told President Donald Trump on Wednesday that he may not deliver a State of the Union speech in the chamber of the House of Representatives until the 33-day-old partial government shutdown has ended.
Responding forcefully to a letter from the president earlier in the day in which he essentially dared her to disinvite him, Pelosi said in a letter to Trump that the House would not consider a measure authorizing the speech for now.
“Again, I look forward to welcoming you to the House on a mutually agreeable date for this address when government has been opened,” Pelosi said to Trump in her letter.
In response to the letter, Trump told reporters at a healthcare-related event at the White House that he would respond to Pelosi in a timely manner.
The State of the Union speech, an annual rite in American politics that is typically used by presidents to announce their policy goals for the coming year, has become a hostage to the standoff between Trump and congressional Democrats over his demands for funding for a U.S.-Mexico border wall.
(Additional reporting by David Morgan; Editing by Kevin Drawbaugh, Jeffrey Benkoe and Lisa Shumaker)
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Updated Date: Jan 24, 2019 02:06:28 IST