Nancy Pelosi is being lampooned, and criticized, for what is considered her rude and contemptuous actions towards the President during the State of the Union Address Tuesday night. Many viewers were surprised at the Speaker’s actions during and after the speech. At several times during the speech, after standing to applaud certain lines, Pelosi remained standing shuffling through papers, often with her hand raised in a “stop” motion.
But it wasn’t the standing that upset most viewers, it was her demeanor and look as she clapped at one point as the President exhorted lawmakers to “work together” in a bi-partisan manner.
A Washington Post columnist wrote in a column that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s contemptuous clap during President Trump’ State of the Union was “Lucille Bluth-like.”
Bluth is the matriarchal character in the popular TV series “Arrested Development.” Bluth’s character, played by, Jessica Walter, is unloving and, as The New York Times put it, lobs “80-proof Molotov cocktails of sarcasm” during the show. The show remains one of the most popular in reruns and streaming platforms.
The House Speaker was relatively expressionless during Trump’s nearly 90-minute speech. But an image of the peculiar way she applauded when Trump mentioned bipartisanship quickly made the rounds on social media.
Monica Hesse, the columnist, wrote, “The lasting visual image can only be described as . . . withering? Pitying? Lucille Bluth-like in its contemptuousness?” She added: “[T]his was a derogatory clap, make no mistake. This was mockery wearing a half-baked costume of politeness.”