President Trump spent months working on the speech he’ll deliver tonight to a joint session of Congress, making notations on printed documents, sending new paragraphs to his staff to include and developing themes.
The end result was a set of 60-minute remarks that will be ‘optimistic’ in tone, a White House official told DailyMail.com on Tuesday.
‘It reminds everybody what this country should be about,’ the official added.
Assisting Trump with the speech were White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter, National Economic Council head Gary Cohn, Speechwriters Ross Worthington and Vince Haley, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Senior Policy Advisor Stephen Miller.
End result of President Trump’s work is a 60-minute remarks that will be ‘optimistic’ in tone, a White House official said
President Trump spent months working on the speech he’ll deliver tonight to a joint session of Congress, making notations on printed documents, sending graphs to his staff to include and developing themes
Cohn played a major role in getting the president’s tax cut across the finish line. Miller is guiding Trump’s immigration policy.
Trump did a walk through of the remarks yesterday in the White House’s Map Room. He’s likely to give the remarks another run through today after he concludes the traditional anchor luncheon.
The off-the-record gathering of network talent is an annual fixture of the State of the Union. The president also plans to meet with average Americans he invited to attend his address and sit in the first lady’s box.
Among them are Cpl Matthew Bradford, a veteran who lost both of his legs after stepping on an IED in Iraq. Shrapnel entered his eyes and blinded him.
The president’s youngest guest, 12-year-old Preston Sharp, is responsible for the placement of more than 40,000 American flags and red carnations on soldiers’ graves.
Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the speech would be ‘about bringing the country together, setting a very optimistic vision’ on ‘Today’ on Tuesday.
Kellyanne Conway told the hosts of ‘Fox & Friends’ that it would be a ‘positive’ speech but went on to harangue Democrats for their rejection of President Trump’s immigration compromise.
‘The question of whether this will be bipartisan, is not a question for the Republicans, it’s a question for the Democrats, who have yet to come to the table with anything except wearing black tonight, saying, “Me too,” and I guess boycotting Harvey Weinstein, and Bill Clinton, and, and others,’ the senior counselor to president said.
Kellyanne Conway told the hosts of ‘Fox & Friends’ that it would be a ‘positive’ speech but went on to harangue Democrats for their rejection of President Trump’s immigration compromise
Protests inside and outside of the U.S. Capitol were top of mind on Tuesday as senior White House officials did the president’s bidding on and off television.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and other women aligned with the Democratic Party are wearing black to Trump’s speech this evening in solidarity with victims of sexual harassment, as Conway noted.
At least a dozen Democratic legislators are boycotting the president’s appearance before a joint session of Congress altogether. They will not be present tonight as Trump delivers remarks at 9:10 pm Eastern in the House chamber.
More than two dozen Democratic lawmakers will be bringing Dreamers with them to Trump’s address to highlight their desire to provide illegal youth with amnesty.
Liberal celebrities such as Mark Ruffalo, John Leguizamo, and Michael Moore rallied against Trump on Monday in New York City at an alternative event with progressive activists that organizers called ‘The People’s State of the Union.
‘The need to remove him — and also any Democrat who is in the way of removing him — that is, at this point, a moral imperative for each and every one of us,’ Moore declared from the stage.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said tonight’s State of the Union speech would be ‘about bringing the country together, setting a very optimistic vision’
President Donald Trump will take a stride in the direction of ‘bipartisanship’ in his State of the Union address, the White House has said, delivering remarks that are ‘optimistic’ and ‘unifying.’ He’s seen here in February of 2017 giving his first address to a joint session of Congress as president
Comparing Trump to the party of Adolf Hitler, Leguizamo said: ‘The Nazi Party had an approval rating of 37 back in the day, so don’t feel complacent about the Trump administration’s dismal approval ratings right now.’
Sanders said Tuesday morning on Fox & Friends that the progressives’ message is not only ‘out-of-touch’ but ‘one of negativity and frankly I think a little bit of delusion’ as she ran down a list of President Trump’s first year accomplishments, which included the decimation of ISIS and his appointment of conservative judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
‘This has been a historic year by any way you look at it,’ she said. ‘We’re really excited about talking about our successes of the first year, but even more so what we are going to accomplish over the next seven years.’
Taking a slap at Trump’s opponent in the 2016 presidential election, Sanders said ‘if Americans cared about what celebrities thought, then Hillary Clinton would be president.’
‘Americans wanted somebody to come in and shake up and change Washington, and that’s exactly what President Trump did, and that’s exactly why he’s been an incredible president, and why we’ve had such a successful first year,’ she added.
First lady Melania Trump is expected to reemerge tonight at the State of the Union address and host special guests of the president’s along with her
Sanders said she ‘almost’ feels sorry for the Trump-bashing Hollywood stars.
‘They’re so focused on hating this president that they’re missing all of the great things that are happening in this country, and I think that’s really sad for them, and I think they’re missing an opportunity to actually bring people together, and show a better side of themselves,’ Sanders said.
‘Instead, I think thy look small…it’s impacting them in a much more negative way than certainly it is impacting the president, cause he’s doing great, he’s in great spirits, the country’s doing great and we’re really excited about it.’
On the same program earlier in the morning Conway had refused to call Clinton, a former secretary of state and U.S. Senator, by her name.
‘It’s his conservative agenda that prevailed, and the other person, whose name I never say on TV anymore, that agenda failed,’ Conway boasted.
The senior White House official had been asked about Democrats bringing Dreamers as their dates to Trump’s speech.
‘That’s wonderful. I hope that they’ll thank the president for actually trying to find a resolution on this, because President Obama didn’t, that’s for sure,’ she stated.
While Clinton’s name did not leave her lips, Conway was more than happy to talk about Pelosi, who yesterday said ‘the tax bill is really the dark cloud that hangs over the capital’ at a Washington Post summit that both women spoke at.
‘I just sent her another shipment of vitamins. I want her to be leader of the Democratic Party and the non-speaker for as long as she can,’ Conway snarked. ‘She’s going to be the biggest feature, I think, in ads coming this fall, too, because Republicans will say, look at her.’
Conway, a former pollster, said ‘Democrats are going to run on divided government, checks and balances’ in 2018. ‘It’s not going to work, because a unified government got you your tax cut,’ she asserted.
The White House said Friday during a briefing on Trump’s remarks that the president would emphasize ‘bipartisanship’ in his progress report, delivering remarks that are ‘unifying’ this evening.
Trump’s speech will touch on immigration, infrastructure and national security, the White House said, in addition to traditional topics like jobs and the economy and will center on ‘Building a safe, strong and proud America.’
‘You can expect the President will be speaking from the heart. It will be a speech that resonates with our American values, and unites us with patriotism, and also unites us with the greatly expanded opportunities that is lifting up all Americans,’ a senior official stated.
Echoing that message, Sanders told Fox on Tuesday, ‘I think you’re going to see the heart of the president tonight. I think you’re going to hear a very optimistic message.
‘This is a person who rises to the occasion…Again he has a great story to tell. There have been a lot of things that the media has tried to distract from the successes of the president, but tonight this is his stage, and his time to talk directly to the American people, and I think you’re going to see a lot of the president himself come through, in his words, in the State of the Union tonight,’ she said.
Speaking for himself on Monday, Trump assessed: ‘It’s a big speech, an important speech, we covered immigration…We’re going to get something done, we hope.
‘It’s got to be bipartisan because the Republicans really don’t have the votes to get it done in any other way,’ he said of immigration.
THE DEMOCRATS BOYCOTTING TRUMP’S 2018 STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS
Rep. Danny Davis – 7th district, Illinois
Rep. Earl Blumenauer – 3rd district, Oregon
Rep. Frederica Wilson – 24th district, Florida
Rep. Rep. Jan Schakowsky – 9th district, Illinois
Rep. John Lewis – 5th district, Georgia
Rep. Maxine Waters – 43rd district, California
Rep. Gregory Meeks – 5th district, New York
Rep. Pramila Jayapal – 7th district, Washington
Rep. Bobby Rush – 1st district, Illinois
Rep. Barbara Lee – 13th district, California
Rep. Juan Vargas – 51st district, California
Rep. Albio Sires – 8th district, New Jersey
The Tuesday evening address to Congress will bring together lawmakers, Supreme Court justices and the president’s family.
All of Trump’s children, with the exception or Barron, his youngest, will be present for the speech, the White House said Monday, and so will the first lady.
The list of presidential guests sitting alongside Melania Trump in her box include first responders, service members and small business owners and employees who have benefited from the president’s tax cut.
Conway told Fox on Tuesday: ‘The first lady’s put together a wonderful group of guests tonight.’
‘Some of these individuals’ stories are heroic, some are patriotic, others are tragic,’ Sanders said at her Monday briefing. ‘But all of them represent the unbreakable American spirit, and will inspire our nation to continue growing stronger, prouder, and more prosperous.’
Trump has an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent coming as his guest in a nod to his priorities. The parents of two young girls, Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas, who were murdered by MS-13, will also be in attendance.
Trump shakes hands with Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan after delivering his first address to a joint session of Congress from the floor of the House of Representatives last year
Tonight, Trump will talk about an immigration plan he presented Congress to provide 1.8 million Dreamers who came to the U.S. as children with a pathway to citizenship in a giveaway to Democrats.
In exchange, Trump wants Congress to appropriate $25 million for his wall, and restrict visa access to approved applicants’ nuclear family. The president also wants Congress to do away with the visa lottery system in the plan that has rankled liberals and conservatives.
While it is a focal point of the speech, Trump is also expected to spend time outlining a $1 trillion infrastructure proposal that relies heavily on private investment.
The federal government would put a mere $200 billion toward the plan, that could reach as high as $1.7 trillion.
He could also talk about his plans to continue the operation of the prison in Cuba at Guantanamo Bay.
A senior official could not say if Gitmo would come up in Trump’s speech after a report said the president would sign a executive order mandating the prison for enemy combatants stay open.
The official did say Trump was ‘going to talk about rebuilding our military, returning to the policy of peace through strength, returning to clarity about our friends and our adversaries, and his efforts to defeating terrorists around the world.’
Trump will also be boosting his tax plan in the speech and the record highs of the stock market.
‘There is already a great deal of optimism among Americans about the year ahead. And this year, I think people will see that they had great reason to be optimistic, in terms of the accomplishments and results of the last year,’ the official said Friday.
THE PRESIDENT AND FIRST LADY’S STATE OF THE UNION GUESTS
Corey Adams – Works as a skilled welder at Staub Manufacturing Solutions in Dayton, Ohio, and became first-time homeowners in 2007. The White House said Adams and his wife benefited from the Trump tax cuts, in which their savings will go toward their two daughters’ education savings.
Steve Staub and Sandy Keplinger – Siblings who started Staub Manufacturing Solutions in Dayton, Ohio, twenty years ago. On Monday the White House attributed the ‘Trump bump’ with the Staubs’ decision to hire 14 new employees in the past year and start the work to acquire a new building. They also used the Trump tax cut funds to give their employees Christmas bonuses, the White House said.
Ashlee Leppert – An aviation electronics technician in the U.S. Coast Guard, Leppert was instrumental during last year’s hurricane season. Her most dramatic rescue involved lifting a woman to safety in a helicopter basket. Leppert thought the woman was clutching bags of clothes in arm, when in reality the victim was trying to transport her four children to safety.
Corporal Matthew Bradford – Bradford was the first blind, double amputee to reenlist in the Marine Corps after stepping on an IED while deployed in Iraq in 2007. Bradford joined the Marines straight out of high school and first traveled to Iraq in 2006.
Jon Bridgers – Bridgers is the founder of the Cajun Navy, a non-profit, volunteer rescue and recovery organization that he created in 2016 to respond to flooding in Southern Louisiana. In 2017, the Cajun Navy became an instrumental part in the recovery efforts after Hurricane Harvey flooded swaths of nearby Texas. The group continues to collect donations for storm victims.
Preston Sharp – 12-year-old Sharp has been placing American flags and flowers on veterans’ graves since 2015, after visiting his grandfather’s gravesite and noticing that other veterans were not being honored. Sharp has organized the placement of over 40,000 American flags and red carnations to be put on soldiers’ graves as part of his Flag and Flower challenge. He’s now honored veterans in all 50 states.
Evelyn Rodriguez – Rodriguez and Freddy Cuevas, who will also attend the State of the Union, are the parents of Kayla Cuevas, who was brutally murdered in September 2016 by an MS-13 gang member.
Elizabeth Alvarado and Robert Mickens – Alvarado and Mickens’ daughter Nisa Mickens was murdered by an MS-13 gang member, alongside her friend Kayla Cuevas in September 13. The two girls’ deaths were among 17 Long Island slayings at the hand of the gang.
Officer Ryan Holets – Holets is a police officer in Albuquerque, New Mexico and has been shot twice in line of duty. He became national news, however, when he and his wife adopted a newborn baby, whose mother was addicted to opioids.
David Dahlberg – Dahlberg works as a fire prevention technician in southern California and during his time working at the Pine Canyon Fire Station in the Santa Lucia Ranger District he helped save 62 children and staff members from wildfire that had encircled their camp in 2017
Agent Celestino ‘CJ’ Martinez – Martinez works as a supervisory special agent for the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations unit. As part of his position, he’s worked to dismantle the MS-13 gang, arresting more than 100 gang members. Martinez is also a veteran, having served in the United States Air Force and Air National Guard for more than 22 years.
Staff Sergeant Justin Peck – Peck has served in the United States Army for eight years. While clearing IEDS in Syria, his colleague Chief Petty Officer Kenton Stacy was struck. Peck’s swift actions, including applying a tourniquet, placing an endotracheal tube, and performing artificial respirations and CPR were responsible for saving Stacy’s life.
Trump is expected to open his arms to Democrats in the speech like Chuck Schumer who he’s seen here with in September at the White House. The pair more recently has been feuding
At the swearing in of his new Health and Human Services secretary on Monday, Trump said, ‘We worked on it hard, covered a lot of territory, including our great success with the markets and with the tax cut.
‘It’s going to be I think a very important speech on trade, the world has taken advantage of us on trade for many years, and as you probably noticed we’re stopping that, and we’re stopping it cold and we have to, we have to have reciprocal trade. It’s not a one-way deal anymore, Trump stated.
The president confirmed that the speech would also hit on DACA, the Obama-era program that protected illegal immigrant youth.
‘So we have a lot of things to discuss and we’ll be discussing them, and I hope you enjoy it. Thank you very much. See you tomorrow night,’ the president said.
At her briefing on Monday afternoon Sanders said she didn’t want to spoil the speech by giving too many details away.
‘It will obviously be must-watch TV,’ the Trump spokeswoman stated.
Massachusetts Rep. Joe Kennedy will be giving the official Democratic response to the president’s speech. Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders will also offer a response via video.