Speaker Nancy Pelosi joined U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, Chancellor Carol T. Christ, co-directors of the Institute of Governmental Studies G. Christina Mora and Eric Schickler and me at UC Berkeley for the annual Barbara Boxer Lecture Series.
The subject of Pelosi going viral for ripping up former President Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech came up. Pelosi said at the time: “It’s amazing to me, the response I received from around the country, overwhelming because it let off steam for people.
“I wish I didn’t have to do that. I wish the speech were dignified and truthful, but it wasn’t, so it was the least I could do. There’s some people criticizing me for not doing more, but that’s the least I could do.”
At the UC Berkeley lecture Pelosi said:
Nancy Pelosi seriously referred to herself as a "hero" for ripping up Donald Trump's State of the Union speech. pic.twitter.com/FDH04sMIo5— MRCTV (@mrctv) April 20, 2022
“You work so hard, you pass Affordable Care Act, you pass things, that all these bills. You tear up a speech, you’re a hero.”
Trump’s White House at the time did not think Pelosi was a hero. They wrote on Twitter:
“Speaker Pelosi just ripped up:
“One of our last surviving Tuskegee Airmen.
“The survival of a child born at 21 weeks.
“The mourning families of Rocky Jones and Kayla Mueller.
“A service member’s reunion with his family.
“That’s her legacy.”
Mike Pence said at the time:
“I didn’t see her do it. I found out just a few moments later, and I think it was a new low.
“I wasn’t sure if she was ripping up the speech or ripping up the Constitution.
“It’s clear the contrast here was a president who spent an hour and a half making a speech about America, and Nancy Pelosi in the final moments tried to make it about her and I think the American people see through it.
“I think they see through the pettiness, they see through the politics of all of it.”