WASHINGTON DC – U.S. President Donald Trump delivered his second State of the Union speech commencing a little after 9 o’clock EST on Tuesday night.
As expected, the president used the speech to put pressure on the Congress, particularly the Democrats, to agree to provide funding for his controversial wall on the Mexican border.
“I will get it built,” vowed the president, noting the parties had ten days to agree on a new deal.
“As we speak, large, organized caravans are on the march to the United States,” Trump said, which he described as a “tremendous onslaught.”
At his back was Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Mr Trump greeted both warmly on arrival and on his departure.
Pence repeatedly got to his feet together with Republican lawmakers to give the president a standing ovation each time he stressed an achievement or an ambition. Pelosi did on occasions, but mostly clapped politely.
A number of real life heroes were in attendance and were paid tribute to, including astronaut Buzz Aldrin who 50 years ago this year set foot on the Moon.
The president lauded his decision to relocate the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
He controversially declared that if he hadn’t been elected president that America right now would be at war with North Korea.
He also used the speech to announce a new summit with the North Korean leader.
“We continue our historic push for peace on the Korean Peninsula,” he said.
“Our hostages have come home, nuclear testing has stopped, and there has not been a missile launch in 15 months.”
“If I had not been elected president of the United States, we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea with potentially millions of people killed,” Mr Trump said.
“Much work remains to be done, but my relationship with Kim Jong-un is a good one.”
Mr Trump also praised his announced withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan, noting that almost 7,000 U.S. troops had been killed in Middle East Wars this century and another 54,000 had been seriously wounded. He also claimed $7 trillion had been spent on wars, which he vowed he would avoid in the future.
He said unemployment was now at his lowest level in history, and that employment of women was at its highest. This brought a standing, rousing ovation for the high number of women lawmakers, primarily Democrats.
“Not what I intended,” said Mr Trump.
The president also took aim at the ongoing investigations surrounding his presidency.
Claiming a boom had started when he became president, Mr Trump said the only thing that could hurt the “miracle economy” that has resulted are “foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations.”
“If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation, it just doesn’t work that way,” he said.