It’s Wednesday, Jan. 31. Here are three stories you need to read.
President Donald Trump delivered his first State of the Union
In his speech, Trump counted the economy, the low black unemployment rate and tax reform as his successes. However, many were quick to point out that the economy is growing at the same rate as it was under former President Barack Obama, and the Black Caucus tweeted “Much like the money he inherited from his father to start his business, Donald Trump inherited the low black unemployment rate from Barack Obama.”
Even Trump’s claims that the recent tax cuts were the biggest in American history were proven untrue. As Politifact noted, “Depending on what projection of the current bill you use and what yardstick you measure it by, several bills since 1980 were larger.”
Not everyone in attendance was there to support Trump
Like years past, guests were invited to attend the State of the Union. This year, some Democrats chose to invite important figures in the #MeToo movement.
For example, Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.). invited Rose Gunter, whose aunt Recy Taylor was abducted and brutally raped by six white men in 1994.
“I didn’t know this was going to be happening to me,” Gunter told Mic. “When I was asked [to attend the State of the Union], I said yes, I would come because it was to help other women who were out there who have been going through something.”
Beyond bringing key guests, the women of the Democratic party also chose to wear all-black outfits and Time’s Up pins in solidarity with the movements.
“It’s a symbol of solidarity,” California Rep. Jackie Speier told Mic. “We’re seeing a huge culture shift and a sea of black on the floor will be a potent message.”
Not everyone loved his very, very long speech
Trump certainly had his supporters on social media, especially among the hyperconservative crowed, however, not everyone was as enamored with the president’s words.
“He made no mention of the Russia investigation that has dogged his presidency, nor did he acknowledge the #MeToo moment, even as female lawmakers wore black to mark the cultural moment,” the New York Times wrote about the speech.
“President Trump used his first State of the Union Address to send two conflicting messages at once — to celebrate the results of his combative and deeply partisan first year, and to call upon Democrats to join him to work together in his second,”wrote for the Washington Post.
Meanwhile, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) told CNN’s Jake Tapper you “can’t rely so much on the words that were spoken tonight.”
Several other Democrats, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Joe Kennedy, Del. Elizabeth Guzman and Rep. Maxine Waters all gave responses to the speech. Though only Kennedy and Guzman represented the official Democratic party response.
“The good news is that the vast majority of our people have a very different vision for the future of our country than what Trump and the Republican leadership are giving us,” Sanders said in a tweet. Watch his entire State of the Union rebuttal below.