The most hilarious thing in the history of government happened today: Donald Trump pulled a real power move and grounded all military assets Nancy Pelosi and co. were planning to use to go on an unannounced 7 day trip to several countries. Just as the news media was circle-jerking about Nasty Nancy one upping Big Don and (she actually can’t) cancelling POTUS’ ceremonial SOTU invite, he goes and blows them all out of the water.
I know I already talked about Nancy Pelosi yesterday (read that smack down), but many still haven’t gotten the message: She’s not the president’s equal. The entirety of Congress, including all 435 US Representatives and 100 US Senators, is equal to the president. The constitution also clearly states that the president has the power to convene one or both chambers of Congress in extraordinary circumstances; the longest federal government shutdown in US history indeed qualifies.
It all begs the question – what was Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff doing heading for a 7 day trip immediately after days of vacationing in the Caribbean? They are happy to chastise the president but it seems like he’s the only person actually still in Washington. They’re not even in the city, let alone at the negotiating table. They don’t care.
Diplomatic duties are the responsibility of the executive branch, per the constitution. What was a group of legislatures doing heading out on a foreign relations PR trip, especially during a shutdown they cry night and day about? What does a photo-op in Afghanistan do to bring a resolution for the 800,000 federal workers without pay?
These buffoons aren’t only massive liars, they’re hysterical hypocrites. Nancy Pelosi was probably fuming when her Air Force liaison informed her the flight was cancelled. After all, Nancy Pelosi believes, in her senility, that she is an equal power to the president. Reality hits you hard.
To add insult to injury, the Democrats were already on their way to the airport when they were blocked. The president planned his order to inflict maximum damage. Nancy Pelosi and her fellow House Democrats plus their staff were all packed and ready to go then boom, grounded. Hysterical.
How was Trump able to stop Nancy Pelosi’s trip?
The power of the US federal government is exclusively vested in Trump as president of the United States. This means that he controls all federal government agencies, their staff, direction, objectives, etc., from the IRS to the EPA to NASA. He’s also commander-in-chief of the US Armed Forces (the highest ranking military official). His order is the law; if he says Nancy Pelosi isn’t getting a US government flight to anywhere, it’s not happening; she is not a parallel power to the US president, regardless of her speakership.
While it’s true that the Senate has the mandate to confirm the president’s most senior appointments and the House controls budgets (but the Senate must also agree on the bill, and the president must sign it lest it have a veto-proof super majority), the president is simply the single most powerful person in the United States. Nancy Pelosi, as a US Representative, has no similar power that she could use to retaliate against Trump.
In theory, the powers of the US president are extensive: He can deploy troops in emergency situations to US soil, he can order individuals arrested (Patriot Act et al. greatly increases this power, which is questionable constitutionally), and he can fire the entire federal government.
Pelosi and her Democrats have started a fight they can’t win. Now she’s stuck in the US with Donald Trump… unless of course she still wants to go on her getaway? That would certainly be her prerogative – but she’d have to pay for it.