Friction between the highest Democrat office holders has emerged as President Joe Biden announced the U.S. Military doesn’t support House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA.) trip to Taiwan. Pelosi, for her part, brushed off the concern.
The trip to Taiwan first emerged when it was reported by the Financial Times; however, when Pelosi’s team was reached to confirm the trip, they said it wasn’t typical for them to do so before the House Speaker’s international travel, citing security concerns.
The Biden administration, however, doesn’t support the potential trip.
When Biden was asked by a reporter whether he believed the trip — planned for this summer — was a good idea, the President replied, “I think that — the military thinks it’s not a good idea right now, but I don’t know what the status of it is.”
This is the first time Biden and Pelosi have publically dissented. Typically, the pair have a united front on issues, including moving the President’s agenda forward.
But Wednesday’s comments by Biden show that fractures could be present, especially as more hard-left Democrats in Pelosi’s caucus express their frustration at Biden’s slow pace on issues like climate change and forgiving student loan debt.
The day after Biden’s remarks (Thursday), Pelosi wouldn’t confirm or deny that she had a Taiwan trip on the cards, reiterating security concerns for keeping mum.
Defending her silence, Pelosi stated, “You never even hear me say if I’m going to London because it is a security issue.”
When asked about Biden’s comments, Pelosi said, “I think what the president was saying is that maybe the military was afraid that our plane would get shot down, or something like that, by the Chinese,” before feigning ignorance of Biden’s statements, “I don’t know exactly. I didn’t see it. I didn’t hear it… You’re telling me, and I heard it anecdotally.”