Earlier today, Vice President Mike Pence was forced for the second time in months to prevent President Donald Trump from wandering away from an executive order signing ceremony before he had signed the order (see video below).
Before signing the executive order, Trump delivered a speech in which he tried to explain how his new order, designed to pull the rug out from under President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA), would improve health insurance for Americans. He said the order would help to drive down premiums so that people can buy health insurance cheaper. According to Trump, short-term insurance policies will provide plans that cost less without requiring government subsidy.
“Seven years ago, congressional Democrats broke the American healthcare system by forcing the Obamacare nightmare onto the American people,” he said.
After the speech, Trump went around the audience shaking hands. After shaking hands, he began walking toward the door instead of returning to his desk to sign the executive order.
Everyone at the signing ceremony was surprised when Trump headed straight for the door without signing the order. Fortunately, Vice President Mike Pence had been watching Trump warily. There is no doubt that Pence still had a previous incident fresh in his memory, when Trump nearly walked out of an executive order signing ceremony without signing the order.
Trump signed an Obamacare executive order today ... but only after Mike Pence reminded him to do so pic.twitter.com/fBNFHCKqIa— VICE News (@vicenews) October 12, 2017
Again on Thursday, Trump had almost walked out of the Roosevelt Room venue of the executive order signing ceremony without signing the executive order laid out on his desk when Pence stopped him. Pence touched Trump lightly on the arm to draw his attention. When Trump looked around Pence told him he hadn’t signed the order.
“Mr. President, you need to sign it (the executive order),” Pence said.
Trump grinned and walked back to the small desk where the pen and the executive order were placed. The audience broke into laughter as Trump returned to the desk.
“I’m only signing it because it costs nothing,” Trump said as he prepared to sign the order.
As earlier noted, this is not the first time that Pence has been forced to intervene to stop Trump from wandering away from an executive order signing ceremony. Trump also forgot to sign an executive order related to trade policy earlier in the year. He was leaving the ceremony when Pence stopped him from leaving before signing.
[Featured Image by Andrew Harrer/Getty Images]