Pelosi calls Trump's address 'beneath the dignity' of the White House

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiKamala Harris makes history — as a Westerner On The Money: McConnell says it's time to restart coronavirus talks | New report finds majority of Americans support merger moratorium | Corporate bankruptcies on pace for 10-year high McConnell: Time to restart coronavirus talks MORE (D-Calif.) on Thursday defended her decision to rip up a copy of President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrat calls on White House to withdraw ambassador to Belarus nominee TikTok collected data from mobile devices to track Android users: report Peterson wins Minnesota House primary in crucial swing district MORE's State of the Union address immediately after its conclusion, calling the speech "beneath the dignity" of the White House.

Pelosi blasted the address as being full of mistruths, and Trump for using the House as a "backdrop for one of his reality shows."

"The whole State of the Union was beneath the dignity of the White House, an insult to the Congress of the United States and the American people," she said.

Pelosi spoke to reporters in the Capitol shortly after returning from the National Prayer Breakfast, where she again came face-to-face with Trump as he blasted his opponents and claimed vindication after the Senate voted the day before to acquit him of the impeachment charges passed by the House.

Pelosi criticized Trump for awarding conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh the Presidential Medal of Freedom during the address. 

"Do it in your own office. We don't come in your office and do congressional business. Why are you doing that here?" Pelosi said.

"We do not want the chamber of the House of Representatives to be used as a backdrop for one of his reality shows with unreality in his presentation," Pelosi said.

House Republicans are expected to force a vote later Thursday on a resolution to rebuke Pelosi for tearing up her copy of Trump's address before the cameras.

Pelosi said she ripped up the speech because she wanted to draw attention to his remarks claiming that he would defend health insurance coverage for people with pre-existing conditions despite his administration siding with GOP-controlled states fighting in court to invalidate the 2010 health care law that enshrined those protections.

"It was necessary to get the attention of the American people to say, this is not true. And this is how it affects you," Pelosi said.

She rejected the notion that ripping up her copy of the speech was an act of incivility after a reporter asked if it ran counter to the message she delivers when she frequently counsels her members to maintain dignity in House proceedings.

"I don't need any lessons from anybody, especially the president of the United States, about dignity," Pelosi said.

Despite the clear hostility between Pelosi and Trump, she pointed to recent bipartisan agreements on the trade pact with Mexico and Canada as well as funding the government as evidence that House Democrats can still work with the Trump administration.

"We've had a strained relationship for a while," Pelosi acknowledged of Trump.

Pelosi didn't directly respond when asked if she would invite Trump to deliver another State of the Union address to Congress, instead maintaining that this year's would be his last.

"Next year, we will have a new president of the United States," Pelosi said.