Live State of the Union 2020: Updates on Trump's Speech – The New York Times,

Live State of the Union 2020: Updates on Trump's Speech – The New York Times,

On the eve of a Senate vote on whether to remove him from office, President Trump snubbed Speaker Nancy Pelosi and promoted a ‘Great American Comeback,’ pausing to award Rush Limbaugh the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

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After awarding radio host Rush Limbaugh the Presidential Medal of Freedom , President Trump is continuing his address.


President Trump is set to address the nation as his impeachment trial nears its conclusion.

Credit (Credit …) Erin Schaff / The New York Times

. Trump dispensed with ‘carnage’ in favor of ‘comeback’ as he argued that he has revitalized America.

With the November election just nine months away, President Trump used his speech to frame the choice as he sees it, claiming credit for what he called a “Great American Comeback” and revival of American spirit while defining the coming campaign against the Democrats as a battle to stop the rise of socialism in the United States.

Mr. Trump, who decried what he called “American carnage” when he was inaugurated in January 2022, described a different country on Tuesday night, saying the nation is one again making progress at home.

“In just three short years, we have shattered the mentality of American decline and we have rejected the downsizing of America’s destiny. We have totally rejected the downsizing, ”he said. “We are moving forward at a pace that was unimaginable just a short time ago and we are never going back.”

The cited his tax cuts, deregulation, renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement and a partial trade agreement with China, while arguing against Democratic plans to expand access to health care.

“To those watching at home tonight, I want you to know: We will never let socialism destroy American health care,” he said.

Likewise, he planned to recommit to his campaign to restrict the flow of new people into the country, assailing so-called sanctuary cities that limit their cooperation with federal immigration authorities.

“The United States of America should be a sanctuary for law-abiding Americans,” he is to say, according to an advance text.

[Read more about the guests at Trump’s 2020 State of the Union.]

Mr. Trump and Ms. Pelosi snub each other as speech begins.

President Trump declined to shake the hand of Speaker Nancy Pelosi before his State of the Union Address.

(Credit Credit …

Erin Schaff / The New York Times


It was a night of awkward encounters and pointed snubs. As he arrived at the rostrum, Mr. Trump turned to hand copies of his speech to Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence but when Ms. Pelosi offered her hand to shake, he turned away without taking it. She shrugged.

Moments later, Ms. Pelosi announced Mr. Trump to the assembled lawmakers with the simple words, “Members of Congress, the president of the United States” – eschewing the more florid language that speakers, including her, have used in the past: “Members of Congress, I have the high privilege and the distinct honor of presenting to you the president of the United States. ”

Mr. Trump came across another central figure in his impeachment drama on his way to the rostrum as he saw Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who is presiding over the Senate impeachment trial. The president paused to speak to the chief justice, to which the chief justice appeared to say “thank you” even as he kept a studiously neutral face.

And among the official escorts assigned to bring Mr. Trump into the chamber was Representative Hakeem Jeffries of New York, one of the seven House Democrats prosecuting the president in the Senate trial.

Republicans, by contrast, greeted Mr. Trump enthusiastically, chanting, “Four more years! Four more years! ”As he took the rostrum, as if it were a campaign rally.

Mr. Trump’s appearance in the same House chamber where he was impeached nearly seven weeks ago marked a surreal moment in Washington as he addresses many of the same lawmakers still trying to remove him from office. Despite the fireworks, Mr. Trump all but ignored the battle over the future of his presidency, at least out loud. He told network anchors earlier in the day that he plans to save his thoughts on the matter for a separate speech he wants to give after the final vote on Wednesday, when the Senate is poised to acquit him .

The unusual confluence of the president’s annual speech with an impeachment trial was not a first. President Bill Clinton likewise delivered his State of the Union address in in the midst of a Senate impeachment trial that later acquitted him . Mr. Clinton made no mention of the trial either.

Mr. Trump sought to show support for Venezuela’s opposition by inviting Juan Guaidó to the speech.


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