State of the Union: all talk, no action


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President Trump 2019 State of the Union address revolved around unity, America first and border protection. The address was essentially all the same of what Trump has harped on for months.

Ian Rees, Online Editor-in-Chief

President Trump’s State of the Union address had little valuable substance and was hypocritical considering how Trump operates and what America has seen of his presidency thus far. Trump’s main point in the address was that Washington must end the gridlock and work across the aisle to achieve “historic breakthroughs for all Americans”. This is fantastic and everyone agrees, but only his base of support could possibly believe that this rhetoric means any tangible change from the President in the near future. It’s definitely refreshing to see Trump talk about unity and bipartisanship, but he’s relentlessly shown Americans and the global community that he is close to incapable of actually working across the political aisle. Trump doesn’t merely fail at working with political opponents; he literally tries to alienate them.

Hours before delivering the address, Trump tweeted that Senator Chuck Schumer was already criticizing the speech, and that “[h]e’s just upset that he didn’t win the Senate.” Since the address, Trump has tweeted that “[t]he Dems and their committees are going “nuts,” regarding Russia investigation, as well as stating that “Democrats at the top are killing the Great State of Virginia.” It’s unbelievable, and almost psychotic that Trump thinks he manifests the kind of unifying and bipartisanship values he stated in his address.

Trump continued on in the address, stating his administration’s accomplishments such as the historically low unemployment rate, large cuts in red tape, tax cuts and the expansion of energy production. Trump also stated the few bipartisan accomplishments his administration has led, such as the passing of new legislation that confronts the opioid crisis, reforms to Veterans affairs, as well as the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 which allocates billions of dollars in subsidies to American farmers, though the need for the subsidies are directly caused from the trade war trump incited with China. These accomplishments are the lowest hanging fruit in terms of evidence of Trump being able to work across the aisle.

The most alarming and controversial line from the address was when Trump said, ‘[i]f there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation. It just doesn’t work that way!” This line shows Trump’s lack of respect for the Department of Justice and is frankly a jab to the basic, impartial institutions that have built and maintained the fabric of American democracy.

As expected, Trump hammered home the same statistics he’s presented for weeks on why we desperately need a wall on our southern border. Trump’s narrative that the southern border is in an unprecedented state of chaos is not factual. Data has shown a steady decline in illegal alien apprehensions at the southern border, proving it isn’t a national emergency as he claims. Though Trump has remained steadfast on his demands for a border wall, aides say the President will sign a deal including $1.357 billion for a border barrier to avoid another partial government shutdown. This falls well short of his original $5.7 billion demand.