House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recapped Wednesday’s tumultuous White House showdown with President Trump over Syria, saying she told him his troop pullout was a gift to Vladimir Putin and questioned him about helping Saudi Arabia before Trump had what she called a meltdown.
I also pointed out to the president I had concerns that all roads seemed to lead to Putin. The Russians have been trying to get a hold in the Middle East unsuccessfully and now the president has given them an opportunity with the Kurds reaching out to them for support in Syria, she told reporters at a Capitol Hill press conference Thursday.
Then the president said, Well, the reason Im taking the troops out of Syria is because I promised in the campaign to bring the troops home. My question to him was is Saudi Arabia home? Why are our troops going to Saudi Arabia if you promised to bring them home? Pelosi continued, referring to Trumps move to deploy 1,000 troops to the monarchy, a key regional US ally.
She then said the president grew increasingly agitated as she pursued her line of questioning.
He said, Well, the Saudi Arabians are paying for it. Really, were putting our troops in harm’s way for Saudi Arabia because theyre paying? It just didnt add up. But what it did do is cause a meltdown on the part of the president because he was unhappy with those questions, Pelosi asserted.
Trump, she added, didnt even seem interested in holding the meeting, which was arranged by the White House.
And it was unfortunate because we were invited to the meeting. The president started off the meeting by saying I dont know who asked for this meeting, I didnt, and were like, well, lets proceed anyway. And we had hoped our real mission was to find out what the plan was, she said.
Sen. Chuck Schumer then began pressing the president about what the administrations plan was for Syria and Turkey going forward, Pelosi said.
Trump replied that “My plan is to protect America,” she said, adding that she responded: “Thats a goal. Its not a plan.
The president then unleashed a barrage of insults directed at the speaker, calling her a third-rate politician, and Pelosi, Schumer and Senate Majority Leader Steny Hoyer then left the room.
Trump later tweeted a photo of Pelosi, standing up and pointing at him as he remained seated, and asserted that she was the one who suffered a meltdown.
Pelosi put the photo on her Facebook and Twitter pages.
She also defended her partys impeachment effort, saying it was about the rule of law, not electoral politics.
I keep saying to people impeachment is about the truth and the Constitution of the United States. Any other issues that you have disapproving of the way the president has dealt with Syria, whatever the subject is, the reluctance and cowardice to do something about gun violence, the cruelty of not wanting to help our Dreamers and transgender people, the denial about the climate crisis we face, the list goes on, she said.
Thats about the election. That has nothing to do with what is happening in terms of our oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution.
Trump has slammed the impeachment process as a witch hunt and scam by the Democrats because they know they cant beat him at the ballot box.