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5 Things You Need to Know About the State of the Union Address

On Tuesday, February 5th, 2019, President Donald Trump delivered his second State of the Union Address to Congress, Supreme Court justices, and millions of others watching at home. Here’s everything you need to know about his political summaries, responses, and goals for the future of the United States.

-Bipartisanship

In an effort to unite both Democrats and Republicans, President Trump opened the State of the Union Address with a call for bipartisanship. “Millions of our fellow citizens are watching us now, gathered in this great chamber, hoping that we will govern not as two parties, but as one Nation,” the president hopefully exclaimed. “There is a new opportunity in American politics, if only we have the courage to seize it… victory is not winning for our party, victory is winning for our country.” These inspirational and dynamic phrases started the evening off with toothy smiles all across the country, for many it was refreshing change from the border wall disputes following the government shut-down. However, many criticized President Trump’s almost immediate shift to criticizing liberal ideologies, “We will never be a socialist country.”

-The Russia Investigation

Later, Trump condemned Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Russian involvement in the United States election, implying that it is getting in the way of American political and economic progress. “An economic miracle is taking place in the United States, and the only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations.” President Trump continued, “If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation. It just doesn’t work that way.”

-The Wall

Taking place just days after the government shutdown had ended, Trump took the opportunity to reaffirm his call for a barrier on America’s southern border. “My Administration has sent to the Congress a commonsense proposal to end the crisis on our southern border … In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall – but the proper wall never got built. I’ll get it built.” While some understood and appreciated the sentiment of his push for border protection, many criticized his neglect to address how his want for a wall impacted the government shutdown. Then again, multiple political commentators agreed that it seems counterintuitive for Trump to address a shutdown when public support was not in his favor.

-The Economy

The president emphasized his economic achievements since entering into the Oval Office. “We have created 5.3 million new jobs and importantly added 600,000 new manufacturing jobs — something which almost everyone said was impossible to do, but the fact is, we are just getting started.” He proceeded to cite a record low minority unemployment rate, a figure that has been steadily declining since Obama’s presidency.

-Women

To pay respect and address the Democratic women who dressed in all white in honor of the suffragettes on this evening, Trump stated, “No one has benefited more from our thriving economy than women, who have filled 58 percent of the new jobs created in the last year … Exactly one century after the Congress passed the Constitutional amendment giving women the right to vote, we also have more women serving in the Congress than ever before,” as raucous applause and a standing ovation emerged in the audience.

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