In his first State of the Union speech, U.S. President Donald Trump urged lawmakers to work toward bipartisan compromises, gave no ground on the contentious issue of whether to protect young immigrant known as Dreamers from deportation, and stood by a set of principles opposed by Democrats, including the border wall with Mexico and new restrictions on how many family members legal immigrants can bring into the U.S., Reuters reports.
‘’Tonight, I call upon all of us to set aside our differences, to seek out common ground, and to summon the unity we need to deliver for the people we were elected to serve,’’ Trump said.
Trump did not mention the federal probe into whether his campaign colluded with Russia in the 2016 presidential election and the speech was short on details about Trump’s policy proposals. Trump did not mention Barack Obama either, even though much of his work over the past year involved undoing Obama’s legacy, according to Politico.
While speaking about foreign policy, Trump denounced the ‘’depraved character’’ of North Korea’s leadership and said Pyongyang’s reckless pursuit of nuclear missiles could very soon threaten the U.S. Trump also singled out a North Korea defector in the crowd as an example of what he called the reclusive country’s brutal nature.
Republicans welcomed Trump’s immigration proposals, while Democrats were infuriated by his speech, claiming that the president put an immigration deal even further out of reach with what they called bigoted remarks during his address, Politico informs.
Trump said he was extending an open hand for an immigration deal and that he would provide Dreamers a pathway to citizenship over 10 to 12 years in exchange for funding the border wall and restrictions on legal immigration. Some Democrats expressed disapproval by hissing when Trump said he wanted to rein in chain migration (the ability of legal immigrants to bring a wide-ranging number of family members into the U.S.)
Speaking of the economy, Trump took credit for U.S. economic gains, including a soaring stock market and a low unemployment rate.
‘’This is our new American moment. There has never been a better time to start living the American Dream,’’ he said.