A reporter at her regular news conference this past Thursday asked House Minority Leader for her impressions of President Trump’s first trip abroad. She prefaced her answer with comments on her own trip abroad during a recent break, passing on foreign criticism of Trump while purporting to find it inappropriate. “We may have our disagreements which we fully air in our own country,” she volunteered, “but we don’t go overseas and criticize our president.” By the same token, she added, she was reluctant to criticize Trump while he was overseas.
“It’s unusual for the president of the United States to go to Saudi Arabia first,” she commented. “Saudi Arabia? It’s not even alphabetical. I mean, what, Saudi Arabia.”
Pelosi had done the research necessary to support her critique. She contrasted Trump’s first trip with those of Trump’s five immediate predecessors. “Four of them went to Canada first,” she noted, “and one of them went to Mexico, George W. Bush went to Mexico first, in our hemisphere, it didn’t have to be in our hemisphere, but our friends and neighbors.”
It’s hard to understand precisely what Pelosi was thinking. Trump’s trip itself was almost in reverse alphabetical order. Saudi Arabia, Israel, Italy, Belgium — maybe it should have gone the other way, Israel after Italy and Saudi Arabia last.
Students of ancient history may recall that Pelosi conducted some freelance foreign policy involving an “S” country during the Bush administration when she served as Speaker of the House. In 2007 Pelosi paid a visit to Syrian butcher Bashar Assad in Damascus over the protestations of the Bush administration. “We came in friendship, hope, and determined that the road to Damascus is a road to peace,” Pelosi explained.