WASHINGTON, D.C.—Washington has a long history of using empty chairs to make political statements, from "empty-chairing" politicians who don't show up to hearings to leaving chairs empty to protest gun violence.
The practice continued at tonight's State of the Union address, as Democrats left a lone chair empty in the audience to honor their fallen hero General Qasem Soleimani.
"We wanted to call attention to the violence Trump has wrought against innocent freedom fighters," Nancy Pelosi said. "This is just one way we continue to call out his callous oppression of America's enemies. Any enemy of America is an enemy of me, I always say, and Trump needs to understand that principle."
In a controversial part of the speech, Trump said, "Terrorism is bad," drawing boos from the Democrats' side. "Read the room!" shouted one congressman. "Too soon!"
"I mean, we're usually against terrorism," said Senator Chuck Schumer, "but if Trump is against it, it must be the best thing ever."