What Pelosi Did At The SOTU

Trump’s speech required a strong response: I drew it

President Trump delivered his State of the Union Speech last night, and I did a few drawings. It may be reported as his best delivered SOTU speech — no tripping over words, and he seems to finally feel comfortable with a teleprompter. He moved back and forth, tilting his head upwards and looking down. He is not an easy man to draw, believe it or not. He has no strong features, no chisled chin and his nose is fairly ordinary. His hair, of course, is his most distinctive feature. It has gone from orange to a yellow of sorts. His face still orangish. He eminates an arrogance and displeasure, mixed in with a boastful pride and condescending tone.

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The evening began before Trump walked in, with Nancy Pelosi and Mike Pence standing next to each other not talking. Awkward.

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My favorite part of all is when this guy announces the President. This year, it had a gloomy feeling to it, as you could see Trump looming in the background. He was in the dark, actually — but my skills at drawing for mood like that are not so great. You can get the idea of looming here, I hope (That poor woman, who is she?).

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Trump spoke and spoke and I just did a few drawings. I didn’t fact check him as he went along, and if there were people out there who didn’t know better, you’d think everything in the world is just wonderful — of course all because of Trump. Many people know that things have not improved, because their lives are not improved.

He had special guests, and I only drew one. Juan Guiado, who is the rightful President of Venezuela. The other guests had wonderful stories as well, but I felt they were clearly props for the President.

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There were protests — you could hear them — often they were not shown on television. This was a quick shot I caught of women booing and pointing about something Trump said. They were wearing white in solidarity with the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage

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Trump announced he was giving the Medal of Freedom to Rush Limbaugh, who is suffering from stage 4 cancer. In typical Trumpian fashion, he gave right wing radical radio commentator the medal on the spot, but had his wife, Melania, wrap the medal around his shoulders. Reality TV.

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Perhaps the most startling moment was after Trump finished, while (not) everyone was clapping, Nancy Pelosi ripped up the copy of his address that she had been reading as he delivered it. It was a deliberate and powerful demonstration of what she thought of Trump’s speech. Pelosi was angry at all the lies it contained.

What I am beginning to realize is that in order to show how one feels about this man, one has to pump it up and make it as “showy” as he does. That’s not to say we need to stoop to his level in hate speech. But Pelosi did what she had to do — and she smartly did it visually because words are often not as effective in our visual meme culture — in order to get a message across. A message that this man is not to be trusted. I might put thought balloon over her head as she did this.

I can imagine what it might contain.

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Written by

Visual journalist/writer for New Yorker, New York Times, CBS News, CNN. TED, SXSW speaker. Looking to change world w humor. lizadonnelly.com

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