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Trump sends letter to Pelosi canceling foreign travel over government shutdown



President Donald Trump on Thursday sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi informing her that he was canceling her government trip to Belgium, Egypt, and Afghanistan as a consequence of the partial government shutdown.

“Due to the Shutdown, I am sorry to inform you that your trip to Brussels, Egypt, and Afghanistan has been postponed,” the letter said. “We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the Suthdown is over. In light of the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay, I am sure you would agree that postponing this public relations event is totally appropriate.”

Read more: Nancy Pelosi suggests Trump either postpone his State of the Union address until after the government shutdown ends, or submit it in writing

The letter added that Trump feels it would be “better” if Pelosi stayed in Washington to negotiate an end to the shutdown with him and join the “Strong Border movement.” It went on to say that Pelosi could fly commercial if she wishes to move forward with the trip. Members of Congress typically fly on military planes for official foreign travel.

Pelosi was reportedly scheduled to leave for the trip at 3 p.m. ET. The House Speaker’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from INSIDER.

Trump’s Thursday letter came a day after Pelosi sent a letter to the president calling on him to postpone his State of the Union address, scheduled for January 29, until after the government is reopened. She also suggested he submit the address in writing as an alternative.

Pelosi cited security concerns and the fact that the US Secret Service is currently working without pay due to the shutdown.

Read more: House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer walks back comment that Trump’s State of the Union address ‘is off’

Subsequently, Homeland Security chief Kirstjen Nielsen said her agency and the US Secret Service was fully prepared to provide security for the State of the Union.

The ongoing government shutdown is the longest in US history and is a product of the president’s demand for funding for a wall he wants to build along the US-Mexico border. Democrats feel the wall is unnecessary and would not adequately address the issues the US faces regarding immigration, and have refused to grant Trump the $5.7 billion he’s requested in funding for it.

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