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State of the Union Recap

February 6, 2019

President Donald Trump’s second State of the Union address took place on Feb. 5, 2019 after much debate with Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The country remains uneasy after the historic 35 day government shutdown, and the question of whether the State of the Union would actually happen was undecided until quite recently.

The designated survivor, energy secretary Rick Perry, remains one of Trump’s longest serving cabinet members. He has served as energy secretary since March 2017, according to CNN. Of the cabinet present at the State of the Union, many of them are acting members who have not been officially confirmed yet.

Female democratic politicians dressed in white, a reference to early U.S. activists and suffragists, according to the Washington Post. Many of them sat silent during Trump’s speech, showing their disapproval for Trump and the topics he addressed.

Trump began his speech with talk of unity for the American people, and his hopes that the agenda laid out in his address would not only represent a Republican agenda, but a bipartisan one.

He also discussed America’s need for innovation and increased quality of life for all Americans. Trump boasted his cuts of regulations, saying his administration has cut a record high amount of them.

The room and its mood was clearly divided throughout the speech, with half of those in attendance cheering and standing at almost every sentence, and the other half remaining seated.

Trump also talked about criminal justice reform and the importance of the First Step Act, using Alice Johnson’s story as an example for the American people. After this, he transitioned into discussions over immigration reform and the deadline regarding the government shutdown on Feb. 15.

The House of Representatives has until Feb. 15 to come up with a bipartisan solution regarding immigration for the U.S. budget, a solution Trump hopes will include a southern wall. If both parties cannot come to an agreement, Trump has the option to declare a federal emergency and obtain the funding he needs for the border wall. Currently, he seeks $5.1 billion for the wall, the subject of the government shutdown.

Trump addressed the women in Congress, and acknowledged how the recently inducted Congress sits as the most women-centric in U.S. history. He congratulated said women, who clapped at the recognition.

The State of the Union address is a time-honored tradition in the U.S., and though the circumstances were different this year, Trump delivered a well-received speech.

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