State of the Union Address Highlights Political Tensions


The White House, Creative Commons License

President Trump addresses the joint session of Congress for the State of the Union speech.

On February 4, President Trump gave his State of the Union speech to a joint session of Congress. The State of the Union is a yearly address delivered by the president of the United States to Congress giving the administration’s view of the state of the nation and plans for the future, including future legislation he would like to see passed. This year’s State of the Union address was a little awkward due to the strong political tensions. With the impeachment trial coming to a close, there are still harsh feelings between Republicans and Democrats. The tensions were obvious even from the start. Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, did not give President Trump the proper and ceremonial entrance. When Trump got up to the stand where he was supposed to be speaking, she reached out for a hand shake, and he turned without shaking her hand. Throughout the whole speech, President Trump received many standing rounds of applause, mostly from Republicans.  The Democrats sat and visibly disagreed. The Democratic women in the room dressed in white as a protest. At the end of President Trump’s speech, Speaker Pelosi stood behind him, tearing up a written copy of his speech.

Even though there were tensions and bad blood in the room, there were some good moments that both Republicans and Democrats could enjoy. For example, they recognized the first African American pilot who served in the Air Force. They also reunited a family whose husband and father had been on deployment.

The State of the Union address was a little different this year, which made it clear how great the tensions are between the two parties.