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The State of the Union – What Happened and What Happens Next

On January 30, 2018, President Donald Trump spoke to the nation during the annual State of the Union Address. His speech included key new additions to foreign, immigration, and infrastructure policy, as well as commemorated a variety of individuals who impacted our country through their own trials and tribulations. The address sparked controversy as members of the Democratic party refused to stand and clap during many moments of the speech. Overall, the speech covered a variety of our nation's problems. However, despite President Trump's best efforts, it may have created even more.

Donald Trump proposed and acknowledged many new and old contributions on U.S. policy. The President began by commemorating the newest addition in tax reform, passed in December, calling it “the largest tax reform bill in U.S. history.” Trump also applauded himself for the country’s economic gains; claiming to have created 200,000 new manufacturing jobs and having the lowest unemployment rate for African Americans in 45 years, there was no shortage of applause from the Republican party to hear more companies are moving their business to the United States.

After describing what had already been done to improve the country, President Trump moved onto introducing new policy to the members of The House of Representatives. Most notably, Trump introduced “four pillars” on immigration policy. These changes include a path to citizenship, securing the border, ending green card lottery, and ending chain migration. The overall goal of these pillars is to make it increasingly more difficult for immigration to take place illegally and to make it harder for those already in the U.S. illegally to become citizens. Trump also argued to fund the U.S. military, using North Korea’s growing threat as an example as to why it is necessary. He highlighted the bravery of North Korean defector Ji Seong-ho, who was tortured, had his leg amputated, and still managed to escape. His speech concluded with a nod to repeal the Affordable Care Act, stating the FDA’s approval of drugs was at a record high in 2017. Lastly, Trump also stated his future goal: to give veterans a choice in healthcare and for patients with terminal illnesses to have access to experimental health treatments.

President Donald Trump’s State of the Union Address proposes a few interesting dilemmas. Most notably, his proposed changes in policy directly affect many citizens he is claiming to protect. Under the four pillars of immigration, families could be separated, something no other policy has dared to achieve. Many are also concerned with his clear offensive strategy in dealing with North Korea, which did not include how funding the military will help. Although Trump managed to remain calm and collected during the speech, the real impact will come in the months to follow.


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