Rep. Ayanna Pressley boycotting Trump’s State of the Union

BOSTON (AP) — U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley is planning to boycott President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address.

The Massachusetts Democrat said she decided to skip Tuesday’s speech in part because Trump stokes fear in people of color, women, healthcare providers, the LGBTQ community, low-income families and others.

Pressley also said Trump fails to embody the principles, responsibility, grace and integrity required of the president and shows contempt for the American people, Congress and the Constitution.

“On the eve of Senate Republicans covering up transgressions and spreading misinformation, I cannot in good conscience attend a sham State of the Union when I have seen firsthand the damage Donald J. Trump’s rhetoric and policies have inflicted on those I love and those I represent,” she said.

Pressley represents the state’s 7th Congressional District and is a scathing critic of Trump. In 2018 she defeated longtime Democratic congressman Michael Capuano, a 20-year House veteran, to become the first black woman elected to Congress from Massachusetts.

She has been propelled onto the national stage in part by her association with three other Democratic congresswomen— Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan — labeled the “squad” in part for their criticism of Trump.

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