It’s not often we get to say President Donald Trump earned rave reviews for anything – but Trump earned near-universal praise for his State of the Union speech Tuesday evening.
Despite a media that will no doubt quibble over every word and phrase, and even revise their take and the general feeling of the American people days afterward, Trump earned high marks for the speech before Congress.
The address earned ovation after ovation from his Republican colleagues but was probably most notable for actually getting Nancy Pelosi to applaud several times, for Democrat women standing up and celebrating the successes of their gender under this administration, and even an off-script moment where the entire chamber sang Happy Birthday to a Holocaust survivor, conducted by the President himself.
The President is bound to get a major bump in approval coming out of this and as we head for another showdown over budgets and the border wall late next week.
A CBS News poll indicated that 76 percent of Americans approved of the speech. And with that border-wall fight lingering, Democrats will be most dismayed to learn that a staggering 72 percent agreed with the President’s ideas to tackle legal and illegal immigration.
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) February 6, 2019
Here’s What They’re Saying
ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl, whom the President recently mocked for his suggestions on how to deal with shutdown negotiations, praised his ability to unite the chamber.
“The president and his speechwriters have accomplished something remarkable here tonight — striking several themes that have drawn applause from both sides of the chamber,” Karl analyzed. “That is not unusual for a state of the union, but it is unusual for this President.”
CNN’s Jake Tapper noted that the SOTU had several “wonderful” and “stirring” moments.
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) February 6, 2019
Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan was downright smitten by the President’s effort.
“This has been a deeply adept speech in terms of policy,” she stated. “He cut to the muscle on legal and illegal immigration, on abortion and infanticide, on foreign wars. His vow on socialism will be remembered. Great heroes in the balcony, a real American panoply.”
That shot at socialism was indeed a remarkable moment during the speech.
President Donald Trump slams socialism: “America was founded on liberty and Independence and not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free and we will stay free.”
“America will never be a socialist country.”
Bernie Sanders has a massive frown on his face pic.twitter.com/dY0D2J2CKJ
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) February 6, 2019
Not all socialists approved of the President’s efforts, but then again they’re socialist and are trying to ruin the basic principles the American government operates under.
Why should I be “spirited and warm” for this embarrassment of a #SOTU?
Tonight was an unsettling night for our country. The president failed to offer any plan, any vision at all, for our future.
We’re flying without a pilot. And I‘m not here to comfort anyone about that fact. https://t.co/7bu3QXFMnC
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 6, 2019
Anyway, back to the happiness. There was the Happy Birthday moment …
During President Trump’s State of the Union address, the House chamber sings “Happy Birthday” to Judah Samet, a Holocaust survivor and a survivor of last year’s Pittsburgh synagogue attack. Today is Judah’s 81st birthday. #SOTU https://t.co/EoIjidQI0K pic.twitter.com/E3ErzUvyda
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) February 6, 2019
Fox News reporter Bill Hemmer referred to the speech as his “best performance yet as POTUS.”
Americans Agree On Immigration
Perhaps the worst news for the resistance party coming out of the SOTU is the American viewer’s response to President Trump’s ideas on immigration as stated in the aforementioned poll.
What ideas did he propose? Building a wall!
Trump’s “common sense” proposal for lawmakers “includes humanitarian assistance, more law enforcement, drug detection at our ports, closing loopholes that enable child smuggling, and plans for a new physical barrier, or wall, to secure the vast areas between our ports of entry.”
“In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall — but the proper wall never got built,” he lamented. “I’ll get it built.”
Americans loved the speech. Viewers loves the idea of border security. Pundits even loved the speech.
And there is no doubt Trump will gain a good chunk of political capital after this performance. The tide has shifted back in his favor as another shutdown looms.