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February 10, 2020
In The News

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz filed an ethics complaint against Nancy Pelosi that said the House speaker possibly violated numerous House rules — and maybe even broke the law — by tearing up a copy of President Trump’s State of the Union speech.

The Florida legislator sent a letter to the House Committee on Ethics requesting that it open an investigation and shared the missive on Twitter.

Gaetz wrote that “Speaker Pelosi’s gesture was deeply offensive and appears to violate clauses 1 and 2 of House Rule XXIII,” which dictate the House’s official code of conduct.

“Her behavior does not ‘reflect creditably on the House,’ nor does it follow ‘the spirit and the letter of the Rules of the House.'”

Gaetz, in his letter, said Pelosi’s “unseemly behavior certainly warrants censure.”

The lawmaker asked that after conducting the ethics probe, the committee makes referrals to the Department of Justice “for further investigation and prosecution.”

Pelosi, Gaetz alleges in the letter, “appears to be in violation” of a law that prohibits willfully destroying paper or documents “filed or deposited” in public office.

“There is no question that Speaker Pelosi ‘mutilated, obliterated, or destroyed’ the copy of the President’s address provided to her at the beginning of the evening,” Gaetz wrote, quoting language from the law.

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz filed an ethics complaint against Nancy Pelosi that said the House Speaker possibly violated numerous House rules by tearing up President Trump’s State of the Union speech. Rep. Matt Gaetz (left) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi tearing President Trump’s State of the Union speechAP

After Tuesday night’s State of the Union, Pelosi told reporters that she shredded the papers because it was “the courteous thing to do,” a point Gaetz mentions in his letter as evidence of her alleged wrongdoing.

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