Trump: Nancy Pelosi is a 'Weak and Pathetic Puppet'
President slams Democratic House speaker: 'Come back to Washington and do your job!'
President Donald Trump has trashed Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) over her handling of the coronavirus crisis, blasting the Democrat leader as a "weak and pathetic puppet."
The president shredded Pelosi in a Thursday tweet amid their latest clash over funding for the World Health Organization (WHO) and other issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
President Trump quoted criticisms of Pelosi from Fox News’s Sean Hannity before taking his own swipes at the speaker.
"Nancy Pelosi, you are a weak person. You are a poor leader," Trump quoted Hannity as saying.
"You are the reason America hates career politicians, like yourself," Hannity's comments continued.
“She is totally incompetent & controlled by the Radical Left, a weak and pathetic puppet,” Trump added to Hannity's remarks.
“Come back to Washington and do your job!” Trump blasted at Pelosi.
Crazy “Nancy Pelosi, you are a weak person. You are a poor leader. You are the reason America hates career politicians, like yourself.” @seanhannity She is totally incompetent & controlled by the Radical Left, a weak and pathetic puppet. Come back to Washington and do your job!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 16, 2020
The president’s tweet comes as he and Pelosi have engaged in yet another war of words amid the coronavirus pandemic.
This week, Pelosi sent a letter to House Democratic colleagues criticizing the president for his coronavirus response, saying he “dismantled the infrastructure handed to him which was meant to plan for and overcome a pandemic, resulting in unnecessary deaths and economic disaster.”
Pelosi was referring to a pandemic response team under the Obama administration which Trump gutted upon taking office.
Pelosi went on to say that they “must first understand the truth of what has put us in this position.”
Pelosi said Trump “was warned about the pandemic” in January, “ignored those warnings” and “took insufficient action and caused unnecessary death and disaster.”
“The truth is because of an incompetent reaction to this health crisis, the strong economy handed to Donald Trump is now a disaster, causing the suffering of countless Americans and endangering lives,” Pelosi wrote.
“The truth is a weak person, a poor leader, takes no responsibility.
"A weak person blames others.”
Also this week, Pelosi slammed the president for announcing that the U.S. would immediately freeze funding to the World Health Organization, and vowed to challenge his decision.
“This is another case, as I have said, of the president’s ineffective response, that ‘a weak person, a poor leader, takes no responsibility. A weak person blames others,’” Pelosi said Wednesday.
“This decision is dangerous, illegal and will be swiftly challenged,” Pelosi said.
Some House Democrats are even raising the possibility that the president is breaking the law with the move.
“In a desperate attempt to deflect blame, President Trump is violating the same spending laws that brought about his impeachment,” Evan Hollander, a spokesperson for the House Appropriations Committee, said in a statement to Politico on Wednesday.
“The president does not have the unilateral authority to withhold the United States’ assessed contribution to the World Health Organization,” he told the outlet.
“Moreover, refusing to fund the WHO is a foolish step that only weakens international tools to fight this pandemic and future global health emergencies."
Hollander was referring to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) legal opinion released in January that said Trump broke the law by withholding defense aid to Ukraine – which was at the center of his impeachment inquiry.
The GAO argued that those funds were appropriated by Congress and therefore the administration did not have the right to hold it back just because it disagreed with its allocation.
House Democrats are now suggesting the same legal opinion applies to WHO funding.
A senior administration official told Politico, though, that they "believe that pursuant to the appropriation, we have broad discretion to spend that money."
The president announced Tuesday that the United States would immediately halt funding for the health organization, saying it had put “political correctness over lifesaving measures,” noting that the U.S. would undertake a 60- to 90-day investigation into why the “China-centric” WHO had caused “so much death” by “severely mismanaging and covering up” the coronavirus spread.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the U.S. and a key member of Trump's coronavirus task force, has said misinformation from China, repeated by the WHO, had affected U.S. response efforts.
The United States is the WHO's largest single donor, and the State Department had previously planned to provide the agency $893 million in the current two-year funding period.
Trump said the United States contributes roughly $400 million to $500 million per year to WHO, while China offers only about $40 million.
The money saved will go to areas that "most need it," Trump asserted.