Donald Trump undertook a delicate balancing act Tuesday night as he urged lawmakers to work toward bipartisan compromises, but pushed a hard line on immigration.
Trump, in his first State of the Union speech, gave no ground on the contentious issue of whether to shield young immigrants known as “Dreamers” from deportation.
Aiming to keep conservative supporters happy as he looks to November congressional elections, Trump was visibly impressed with himself (see video above), but here’s how it went down elsewhere...
1) FRANK LUNTZ
Luntz is one of America’s best-known public-opinion gurus and has been consistently critical of Trump despite being a strategist for the Republican party.
Normally his tweets are lightly (in Twitter terms) critical such as when he commented on the Britain First retweet controversy.
Last night however, he drastically changed his tune.
2) DONALD TRUMP JR
Well, he would say that.
3) THE VIEWERS
Some pretty impressive poll numbers after the event.
If only he could so the same with his approval ratings.
4) MELANIA TRUMP
Melania hasn’t spoke publicly about the speech but she did arrive on her own...
...and took a separate motorcade to her husband.
And left on her own...
So make of that what you will.
6) GREG SARGENT
The Washington Post opinion writer wasn’t swallowing the whole “unity” thing.
“Trump actually doubled down on pretty much every aspect of his presidency that large majorities of Americans have found so searingly polarising and divisive. The real core of the speech was his effort to rhetorically recast the key elements of that approach as unifying and conciliatory without moving past them at all.”
This was a theme echoed by Jon Favreau, former-speech write for President Obama.
7) PIERS MORGAN
Hmm, liking a speech is a very different kettle of fish to liking a presidency - perhaps when the number below is around 75 percent across the entire country the Dems really will be worried.
Regardless, Piers writes:
“For such a seriously divisive and polarising President, who is currently languishing with just 39% personal approval ratings, these were sensationally good results.
“Interestingly, 8/10 Americans in the poll felt the President was trying to unite the country with his speech and two thirds of Americans said it made them feel proud.
“Less than a quarter that watched said it made them feel scared or angry.”
That’s right, we live in a world in which less than 25 percent of Americans not being terrified of their own President is deemed a success.
8) NANCY PELOSI
The Democratic leader was far from impressed and doesn’t look set to take Trump up on his offer of cooperation when he said:
“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.”
9) SEAN HANNITY
Sean bloody loved it.
But here’s a reminder from just last week about just how quickly Sean will completely U-turn on his principles to fit his narratives.
10) MIKE PENCE
The Vice President unsurprisingly thought it was great.
He is of course forgetting to mention all of the economic success lauded by Trump during his speech can almost entirely be attributed to non-Trump factors, but when you stare at someone like Mike Pence stares at his boss, you have no choice but to play it up.
11) SPECIAL COUNSEL ROBERT MUELLER
No one knows if he watched the speech last night or not but the very next day news broke that suggested he had just carried on working instead.
It was revealed he is seeking to interview the former spokesman of Trump’s legal team as part of an investigation into potential collusion between Russia and Trump’s campaign to sway the 2016 US presidential election.
Corallo may be questioned about reports that Trump had dictated a misleading statement on a meeting in June 2016 that his son held with a group of Russians, the source said.
This should all end well...