Trump speaks to each of us in this nation like a true American patriot

Trump speaks to each of us in this nation like a true American patriot
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff urges GOP colleagues to share private concerns about Trump publicly US-China trade talks draw criticism for lack of women in pictures Overnight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall MORE continued his hitting streak with the State of the Union. He’s now two-for-two in teleprompter speeches delivered in the chamber of the House of Representatives. It deserves a review.

The content of the speech itself was very well written. It evoked the proper patriotic and heroic imagery (“the beauty of America’s soul,” “the steel of America’s spine”), touched the proper conservative greatest hits of year one (regulatory rollback, confirmation of a new conservative Supreme Court justice, repeal of ObamaCare’s individual mandate, tax cuts and economic growth, affirming Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, significant gains against ISIS), laid out a year two legislative agenda (immigration, infrastructure, defense buildup), and introduced a couple of memorable lines and phrases (“a new American moment,” “Americans are dreamers too”).

The tone of the speech was uplifting, optimistic, and forward looking. Paraphrasing an old joke from Ronald Reagan, this speech was written for Americans who believe every day is the Fourth of July, not April 15. President Trump’s declaration, “This is our new American moment. There has never been a better time to start living the American Dream” was itself a nod to the 40th president.

More importantly, President Trump understood and seemed fine with the notion that his audience wasn’t the one sitting in front of him in the chamber, but rather the vastly larger group watching at home. When Democrats refused to applaud individual lines — even those seemed to have been tossed in underhanded fashion directly at them — he resisted the temptation to rise to their bait and contented himself with applause from Republicans.

But most importantly, President Trump deployed this year’s “Skutniks” — special guests, seated in the First Lady’s box, who take their name from Lenny Skutnik, the hero of Flight 90, who, two weeks before President Reagan’s 1982 State of the Union address, dove into the icy waters of the Potomac River to rescue a drowning passenger injured by the crash of an Air Florida jet into the superstructure of the 14th Street Bridge — better than has any president since Reagan originated the exercise.

For the first time, President Trump didn’t just assemble a group of notable Americans who had performed acts of heroism or civic duty beyond the norm, he (his staff, actually) chose them as examples to illustrate the policy points he was making.

So the late Otto Warmbier’s parents were acknowledged in a section of the speech dealing with North Korea. Ryan Holets, a police officer with the Albuquerque P.D., who adopted with his wife Rebecca the infant child of a homeless woman addicted to drugs, was introduced in a section dealing with the drug epidemic. Staff Sgt. Justin Peck, who braved a boobytrapped building to rescue his injured comrade-in-arms, was honored in a section dealing with terrorism.

Perhaps my favorite was Preston Sharp, a 12-year-old who took it upon himself to place flags on the graves of our veterans on Veterans Day. President Trump acknowledged the boy, and then said, “Preston's reverence for those who have served our nation reminds us of why we salute our flag, why we put our hands on our hearts for the Pledge of Allegiance, and why we proudly stand for the National Anthem.”

But even as President Trump acknowledged the issues with illegal immigration in the country, he made the first pillar of his immigration reform proposal granting amnesty and citizenship to illegal immigrants, and named that before the other pillars of his immigration reform, as if that is the highest priority in closing the “loopholes.” The grassroots oppose this strongly, and believe it to be in direct contravention of the promises President Trump made on the campaign trail.

President Trump acknowledged the soaring costs of prescription drugs and the repeal of the individual mandate from ObamaCare. Those of us who have worked for years to campaign for the majorities in the room last night based on the promise to repeal ObamaCare and restore health care freedom are disappointed there was no mention of a commitment, a determination, or even a desire to regroup in the second year and attempt another legislative effort to repeal ObamaCare.

Sadly, throughout the speech Democrats sat on their hands, barely clapped, and attempted to dampen and dim President Trump’s message, even as he appealed to their policy priorities of infrastructure, paid family leave, criminal justice reform, and the lowest African American and Hispanic unemployment levels in history. Despite their best efforts, Democrats cannot dampen the dreams of the American people.

President Trump closed this speech sounding like the patriot he is. He loves our country, understands what makes America great, and encourages all Americans to continue to yearn to be free, to chart our own destiny, and to light up the world.

I look forward to continuing to stand alongside all Americans with Trump as our president as we continue to make America great again. As President Trump said, “As long as we are proud of who we are, and what we are fighting for, there is nothing we cannot achieve. As long as we have confidence in our values, faith in our citizens, and trust in our God, we will not fail. Our families will thrive. Our people will prosper. And our nation will forever be safe and strong and proud and mighty and free.”

Jenny Beth Martin is chairman of the Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund.