Trump has made no appearances at area food banks or other gathering places for furloughed workers, nor has he used the bully pulpit of his office to spotlight their basic struggles.
He also has rarely mentioned workers in recent meetings. In a Jan. 15 call with surrogates, he blamed Democrats for them not being paid and made no suggestions for helping them, according to audio obtained by The Washington Post.
In meetings with conservative leaders and economic advisers this week, Trump has worried that the furloughed workers could hurt his economic accomplishments, according to two people who have spoken with him. And at a recent Senate lunch, they said, he talked about the importance of making sure Coast Guard workers were paid — but that has not happened. Like others interviewed, these people spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Pelosi, by contrast, toured celebrity chef José Andrés’s World Central Kitchen in downtown Washington, which has been serving free meals to furloughed workers. And Democratic lawmakers across the country have invited media to see them interact with air traffic controllers and other constituents who are missing paychecks.