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HomeWorldBiden strokes Republicans and campaigns soft in State of the Union address

Biden strokes Republicans and campaigns soft in State of the Union address


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In his first State of the Union address to a House controlled by the Republican Party, US President Joe Biden called for unity and praised the country’s ability to overcome crises, such as the Covid-19 pandemic and the attack on the Capitol in 2021 .

While the political class waits for Biden to formally launch his campaign for re-election in the coming weeks, the Democrat avoided harsh attacks on the opposing party on Tuesday night (7) and directed his focus to exalting the achievements of his two years in office.

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“Republican friends, if we were able to work together in the last Congress, there’s no reason we can’t work together in this new Congress. The people have sent us a clear message. Fighting for fight, power for power, conflict for conflict, gets us nowhere. And that’s always been my vision for the country: to restore the nation’s soul, rebuild America’s backbone, the middle class, to bring the country together,” he said.

State of the Union is the name given to the speech that the American president makes every year – with the exception of the first year of government – to account and publicize government priorities to Congress and Supreme Court justices. Provided for in the Constitution, it is one of the most anticipated moments in American politics and broadcast by the main open TV channels.

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Biden’s speech has been seen as a kind of soft announcement of re-election next year – when he will be almost 82 years old. For this reason, he had a more optimistic, purposeful and political character, unlike last year, a few days after the start of the Ukrainian War, when he was forced by circumstances to focus on foreign policy and announced the closure of American airspace for flights from Russia.

Already in a “soft campaign” mood, Biden will start on Wednesday (8) a tour of American states, starting with Wisconsin, and on the morning of Friday (10) he should receive governors at the White House – the same day that , in the afternoon, will receive the Brazilian president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT).

“America’s story is a story of progress and resilience. We are the only country that emerged from each crisis stronger than when we entered it. That’s what we are doing again,” he said this Tuesday, before praising the post-American economic recovery. Covid.

“Two years ago, our economy was reeling. As I’m here tonight, we had a record 12 million new jobs – more jobs created in two years than any president has ever created in four years. Two years ago, Covid shut down our business, closed our schools and took a lot from us. Today, Covid no longer controls our lives.”

In fact, the level of unemployment in the country is at record lows with the creation of new jobs each month surprising economists, and Biden has still managed to control inflation, but the economic prospects for this year are of low growth or even recession.

Biden also spoke to the audience – which included Republican parliamentarians who are still contesting the results of the elections that gave him victory over Donald Trump – about the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021. “Two years ago our democracy faced its greatest threat since the Civil War. Today, though bruised, our democracy remains unyielding and intact,” he said.

Until last year, the image of Biden addressing parliamentarians was accompanied by the vice president, Kamala Harris, on his right, and Democrat Nancy Pelosi, then Speaker of the House, on the left, reinforcing the image of strength of the Democratic Party.

This time, Biden spoke to the new Speaker of the House, Republican Kevin McCarthy, in the back, a reminder that Democrats are no longer calling the shots there.

A supporter of former President Donald Trump, McCarthy last week reinforced his intention to open an investigation against Hunter Biden, the president’s son, and in early January the new House approved the creation of a commission to investigate the investigation of the Department of Justice against Trump.

One of the most memorable moments of the last State of the Union speeches, in fact, came from the tension between the president and the head of the Chamber of different parties. In 2020, Trump ignored Pelosi’s salute when going to the pulpit. Afterwards, Pelosi, who had already opened impeachment proceedings against the president, tore up copies of the speech in front of the cameras.

This Tuesday, however, the climate was milder, in line with the speech calling for unity. McCarthy and Kamala were chatting amicably in the pulpit before Biden’s arrival, and the mayor even asked Republicans to behave in the session. Furthermore, Biden’s speech lacked the usual attacks on “Maga extremists”, in reference to Trump’s slogan, “Make America Great Again”.

Biden praised projects that had bipartisan support, such as recognizing gay marriage. He has now asked for consensus to approve packages to combat cancer and assistance to war veterans, among other things.

If Biden really wants to run for re-election, however, he will have to worry about his popularity. The Democrat reaches half of the government with 43.2% approval, according to the FiveThirthyEight portal aggregator. The figure is slightly higher than that of Trump at the same time in office (40.2%), but below those of Barack Obama (48.5%) and George W. Bush (59.5%). The disapproval rate of the current president is 52.2%.

Trump, his most popular opponent, has already announced that he will run again for president. Other republican chess pieces move for this, like the governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis.

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