President Petty McNoPants Bails On Pelosi's St. Patrick's Day Lunch
It should surprise no one that Donald Trump is skipping the annual St. Patrick's Day lunch Thursday and blaming his arch-nemesis, Nancy Pelosi. Trump is petty and lacking in the simplest grace. He can't even put aside his differences with Pelosi long enough to enjoy some corned beef and cabbage. The speaker of the House traditionally hosts the lunch at the Capitol. The taoiseach (a fancy word for prime minister) of Ireland even shows up. It's a big party, but Trump wants no part of it because Pelosi is dead to him.
White House spokesman Judd Deere released the following statement, roughly translated into English from pidgin Drama Queen.
"Since the Speaker has chosen to tear this Nation apart with her actions and her rhetoric, the President will not participate in moments where she so often chooses to drive discord and disunity, and will instead celebrate the rich history and strong ties between the United States and Ireland at the White House on March 12. The relationship between our two countries has never been stronger, and the President looks forward to welcoming the Prime Minister of Ireland for the annual Shamrock Bowl presentation."
Leo Varadkar is prime minister of Ireland. It's a given he'll have more fun with Pelosi than Trump. She was delightful at last year's luncheon, while our illegitimate president was clearly miserable. He refused to laugh at Pelosi's jokes, which meant he just sat there like Grumpy Cat while everyone else laughed because Pelosi is awesome. Trump wasn't the life of that party, so it's not like anyone's enjoyment will suffer from his absence. Most likely the opposite will occur. Trump will have to sit at home knowing that Pelosi is killing.
House Speaker Tip O'Neill hosted the first St. Patrick's Day lunch in 1983. It was intended to "ease tensions" between O'Neill and fellow Irish-American Ronald Reagan. The lunch became an annual event in 1987 and sitting presidents have missed it only under extreme circumstances: Bill Clinton had to beg off in 1997 because he'd just had knee surgery. George W. Bush in 2003 probably thought it was inappropriate to attend just a few weeks before his stupid invasion of Iraq. Normally, the vice president subs for the absent chief executive, but Mike Pence is not scheduled to attend, either. That master strategist Trump covered all the bases!
Pelosi also had words for Trump, courtesy of her deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill, and they are epic words.
"There has never been stronger support in the Congress and in the country for the U.S.-Ireland bilateral relationship. One would think that the White House could set petty, partisan politics aside for this historic occasion."
Trump refuses to "drink with thine enemy." He's like a Klingon but with no honor and worse makeup. I'm sure his supporters will see this as a demonstration of his much vaunted "authenticity" rather than the rank cowardice it actually is. Personally, I almost wish Pelosi had held the luncheon without Trump all along. If our democracy functioned properly, Trump would've been removed from office for all his obvious and sundry offenses against the nation. Beating his impeachment charges isn't like winning an election, which he's yet to honestly do. There's no reason to grant Trump all the niceties his farce of a presidency doesn't deserve. I get though that Pelosi is an institutionalist. Still, if Trump refused to attend any social gathering where Pelosi is present, maybe he would've finally "self-impeached" himself. That's worth cracking open some Guinness to celebrate.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).