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Democrats gear up for State of the Union protests as impeachment lingers

A number of House Democrats are gearing up to stage protests against President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE's State of the Union address once again Tuesday, this time after voting to impeach him. 

Female Democrats are reprising their coordinated white outfits to show solidarity with women, and, as in years past, at least a handful of lawmakers are considering or planning to boycott Trump’s speech in the House chamber entirely.

The final vote in the Senate trial to acquit Trump will likely come on Wednesday, the day after his speech, and the lawmakers absent for the address will include some of the earliest and most fervent supporters of impeachment.

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Rep. Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenDe Blasio mum on whether he'll block sale of Mets to controversial investor Two ethics groups call on House to begin impeachment inquiry against Barr Jewish lawmakers targeted by anti-Semitic tweets ahead of election: ADL MORE (D-Tenn.), who introduced articles of impeachment against Trump in 2017, skipped the last two State of the Union addresses. He told The Hill that he has no intention to "go in a very cold room and hear a bunch of puff and lies." 

Rep. Al GreenAlexander (Al) N. GreenRemoving slurs, bigotry from places on our maps paves the way to remove them from all aspects of our lives Safeguarding US elections by sanctioning Russian sovereign debt The Memo: Trump furor stokes fears of unrest MORE (D-Texas), who forced three House votes on impeachment and has boycotted all of Trump's addresses to Congress to date, said that he was undecided. 

“The things that caused me to stay away have not changed,” Green acknowledged. But he said that he has been “encouraged” by a colleague to attend and is weighing his decision.

At least six House Democrats made a point of not attending last year’s State of the Union, while 14 boycotted the address in 2018.

The offices of other Democrats who boycotted Trump’s State of the Union in the last two years — including Reps. Earl BlumenauerEarl BlumenauerOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Barrasso to seek top spot on Energy and Natural Resources Committee | Forest Service finalizes rule weakening environmental review of its projects | Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight Restaurants brace for long COVID-19 winter MORE (Ore.), John LewisJohn LewisKwanza Hall wins race to briefly succeed John Lewis in Congress Congress must act to protect and expand Social Security benefits Ossoff features Obama in TV ad ahead of Georgia runoff MORE (Ga.), Hank JohnsonHenry (Hank) C. JohnsonDemocratic senators unveil bill to ban discrimination in financial services industry Five takeaways as panel grills tech CEOs Lawmakers, public bid farewell to John Lewis MORE (Ga.) and Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersSweeping financial crimes bill to hitch a ride on defense measure Katie Porter in heated exchange with Mnuchin: 'You're play-acting to be a lawyer' Emergency housing assistance for older adults needed now MORE (Calif.) — did not respond when asked if they would attend this time around. 

But among those sure to be at the State of the Union, which will also take place a day after the Iowa presidential caucuses, will be the Democrats who oversaw the impeachment inquiry.

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Trump will come face-to-face with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiBiden backs 0B compromise coronavirus stimulus bill US records over 14 million coronavirus cases On The Money: COVID-19 relief picks up steam as McConnell, Pelosi hold talks | Slowing job growth raises fears of double-dip recession | Biden officially announces Brian Deese as top economic adviser MORE (D-Calif.) for the first time since she presided over the House votes to impeach him in December.

A Pelosi spokesman confirmed that the Speaker and the president have not spoken since a disastrous Oct. 16 White House meeting about Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from northern Syria.

The two sides disagreed over whether Trump called Pelosi a “third-grade” or “third-rate” politician, but Democrats angered by the insult walked out of the meeting.

Pelosi told reporters assembled in the Capitol afterward that Trump had a “very serious meltdown” and that “we have to pray for his health.”

Relations between the two haven’t improved much since then.

Pelosi, who will be seated behind Trump during the address, is likely to be among the female lawmakers wearing white, like last year. A photo of Pelosi clapping with her arms outstretched in response to Trump calling for an end to "revenge politics" went viral last year, which was the first of his term with Democrats controlling the House.

Democratic women — and some men — wore white, the color of suffragettes, at the 2019 State of the Union as well as Trump’s joint address shortly after his inauguration in 2017. They wore black in 2018 in solidarity with the “Me Too” movement rooting out sexual misconduct.

Rep. Lois FrankelLois Jane FrankelFrankel defeats Loomer in Florida House race Live updates: Democrats seek to extend House advantage Shakespeare Theatre Company goes virtual for 'Will on the Hill...or Won't They?' MORE (D-Fla.), a co-chairwoman of the Democratic Women’s Caucus, said she felt it was necessary to send a message from the room to women and her constituents instead of boycotting the address.

“I think it's important to be there. The country is watching,” Frankel said. “I want them to know that we are there and sending the message that we are fighting back and we're fighting for the people.”

Many of the vulnerable Democrats facing tough reelection races this year would rather spotlight campaign issues such as lowering the cost of prescription drugs at the State of the Union as they seek to move on from impeachment.

Rep. Susie LeeSuzanne (Susie) Kelley LeeMORE (D-Nev.) is bringing a 75-year-old constituent who faced high costs to treat a chronic ear infection, while Reps. Susan WildSusan WildDemocratic Women's Caucus members split endorsements for House campaign chief Democratic Rep. Susan Wild wins reelection in Pennsylvania Congress must act to end US military aid to the Philippines MORE (D-Pa.) and Charlie CristCharles (Charlie) Joseph CristFlorida Democrat introduces bill to recognize Puerto Rico statehood referendum Anna Paulina Luna wins Florida GOP primary in bid to unseat Charlie Crist The feds should not spend taxpayer dollars in states that have legalized weed MORE (D-Fla.) have invited guests with diabetes to also draw attention to prescription drug costs.

Freshman Rep. Dean PhillipsDean PhillipsChamber-endorsed Dems struggle on election night If we want change, young people have to do more than protest Pelosi and Trump go a full year without speaking MORE (D-Minn.), meanwhile, is trying to demonstrate bipartisanship amid the impeachment fever pitch.

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Phillips has invited the Republican mayor of Brooklyn Park, a city in his district, to tout their work together on issues such as affordable housing and providing a pathway to citizenship for Liberians with deferred enforced departure status.

“With all the division in politics right now, I believe the cooperation in Brooklyn Park sends a powerful message on what we can do together to solve problems and restore the American people’s faith in our government,” Phillips said in a statement.

With Trump able to keep the microphone to himself for most of the evening, lawmakers have limited outlets to express themselves aside from applause, groans or blank stares in response to the president’s remarks.

But they hope to send messages through their guests, attire or absence altogether.

“Even though we're sitting down, we're not taking it sitting down,” Frankel said.