The 2019 SOTU Review: A Trump Administration Triumph
Trump's remarks strongly contrasted the difference in Republican optimism and Democrat pessimism.
Today is Ronald Reagan’s birthday. In the years since his presidency, through the Bush (41), Clinton, Bush (43), and Obama years, analyzing State of the Union addresses has been more about endurance than inspiration.
But, surprisingly, that changed last year with Donald Trump’s first address, “Our New American Moment.” His second address last night was even better than the first. These SOTUs did not follow the worn template of providing a wish list, but instead were a running recap of administration and congressional successes over the last two years.
In both instances, President Trump’s remarks strongly contrasted the difference in Republican optimism and Democrat pessimism — Republican advocacy for Liberty and self-reliance versus Democrats’ advocacy for dependence, statism, and now unapologetic socialism based on their failed policies of the past.
We concluded years ago that the Democrat Party was not one of the oppressed but of the depressed. And that deranged institutional depression has become epidemic.
Again in his latest SOTU, Trump instilled pride in who we are as a nation. It was framed by unity rather than partisanship. “Victory is not winning for our party,” he declared. “Victory is winning for our country.” He began and ended his address with calls for unity and he highlighted numerous areas that should enlist universal agreement, largely about America’s promise and historical achievements. There were several issues in the middle of his speech that should unify Americans, especially the Trump administration’s strong economic record. But the Democrats would have no part in a call for unity.
Trump opened, saying, “Members of Congress, the state of our union is strong.” Yet over his shoulder, Nancy “Sourpuss” Pelosi shook her head. Clearly, good news is bad news for Democrats, whose best political hope is to drive the nation into recession before 2020.
Trump noted, “In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall — but the proper wall never got built. I will get it built.” He completely shifted the immigration debate to protecting American jobs and people.
Trump declared, “Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.” That shouldn’t be controversial, although socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders and other socialist Democrats looked like they were suffering heart failure.
Record-low unemployment — especially for black and Hispanic Americans — rising wages across the board, and an overall strong economy are not partisan issues; they are facts. Yet in each instance when we should all agree, many if not most Democrats sat on their hands rather than applauding. However, Trump did get almost the entire room chanting “USA, USA” after mentioning the stats on the number of women now in the workforce.
People may not see eye to eye on when abortion is appropriate — there’s not much common ground between “never” and “most of the time.” But it should be beyond dispute to say that children should not be killed at the moment of or even after birth.
“Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life,” Trump said. “And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: All children — born and unborn — are made in the holy image of God.”
Notably, Trump did receive almost unanimous approval for what we believe was the best gathering of gallery guests in any State of the Union.
Trump concluded, “We must choose whether we are defined by our differences — or whether we dare to transcend them. We must choose whether we squander our inheritance — or whether we proudly declare that we are Americans: we do the incredible, we defy the impossible, we conquer the unknown. We must choose between greatness or gridlock, results or resistance, vision or vengeance, incredible progress or pointless destruction. Tonight, I ask you to choose greatness.”
We rate this high among the best modern-day SOTUs, and many who viewed it agree. The Leftmedia network CBS reluctantly reported its findings regarding public approval of Trump’s State of the Union: 76% of those watching the speech approved, including a 30% approval rating among Democrats and 82% among Independents. Notably, 72% approved of his immigration plan. (We hope Trump will not derail the success of this SOTU, as is his penchant, with some petulant, dis-unifying social-media post.)
Of course, chief among those not approving were Pelosi and DNC Chairman Tom Perez.
For her part, Pelosi concluded: “It will take days to fact-check all the misrepresentations that the president made tonight. Instead of fearmongering and manufacturing a crisis at the border, President Trump should commit to signing the bipartisan conference committee’s bill to keep government open and provide strong, smart border security solutions. … President Trump must now take concrete steps to work with Democrats to strengthen the health and economic security of families across America. After two years of the president’s empty words, the American people deserve real results.”
Actually, this is a fine example of Pelosi’s “alternate universe” perspective. The Trump administration and Republican Congress have clearly strengthened “the health and economic security of families across America” and, demonstrably, the American people are experiencing “real results.”
And for those watching the SOTU, there is now a consistent Pelosi poker tell — when she knows Trump has succeeded where Democrats have failed, she starts doing that smirk thing, as if trying to get the spinach out of her teeth. The Demo/MSM machine was certainly consumed with what it claimed was a teenager’s smirk two weeks ago — but not a word on Pelosi’s smirk, and all the others on the left side of the room last night.
Predictably, according to Perez: “After attending Trump’s State of the Union tonight, I know this for certain: The only way that we will be able to stop his outrageous, divisive agenda is by taking back the Senate and putting a Democrat in the White House in 2020. I am going to fight like hell to make sure we’re building the infrastructure necessary to continue to elect Democrats up and down the ballot in the months and years ahead.”
The bottom line: There will be no unity in the next two years, because Democrats and their Leftmedia publicists thrive on division and partisanship, the antithesis of unity. They have reconstructed their political platform on a “Hate Trump” foundation, rejecting Rule of Law, the most basic tenets of morality, and America’s First Principles.
(If you are interested in our coverage of the Left’s response to the SOTU, read our summary of Stacey Abrams’ remarks.)