WASHINGTON (AFP) – President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address became a shocking display of US divisions Tuesday with Democrats protesting the Republican’s boasts before their leader, Nancy Pelosi, ripped up her copy of the speech on live television.
The House speaker’s gesture at the very end encapsulated the seething atmosphere in the Capitol throughout Trump’s one hour and 18 minutes speech.
Instead of what traditionally has been an annual moment for political truce, this State of the Union mirrored the political war raging through the country ahead of November elections.
Trump was still on the podium, having just completed the soaring finale to his speech when Pelosi, standing just behind him, raised the papers and demonstratively tore them to pieces.
“It was the courteous thing to do, considering the alternatives,” she told a reporter afterwards.