President Donald Trump on Tuesday delivered his State of the Union address to the nation. The president sought to strike a positive tone and describe a "New American Moment" characterized by prosperity, rebuilding and cooperation.
"There has never been a better time to start living the American dream," Trump said. "I want to talk about what kind of future we are going to have, and what kind of nation we are going to be."
On paper, the text of Trump's carefully crafted speech was filled with optimism and energy. But the president delivered the address in a reserved tone, and at times he appeared tired. Earlier in the day, White House officials had told reporters the president's speech would be "positive," and "bright and optimistic."
Delivery notwithstanding, the speech was effective overall on its terms, allowing the president to reiterate many of his core policy positions, to reach across the aisle on certain issues, and to recognize a number of outstanding men and women who were present in the audience.
All told, Trump spoke for an hour and 20 minutes, and he received more than a dozen standing ovations. The official theme of the speech was "a safe, strong and proud America." Trump began the address with a brief victory lap for his newly enacted tax cuts and for the overall strength of the U.S. economy.
"Since we passed tax cuts, roughly 3 million workers have already gotten tax cut bonuses — many of them thousands of dollars per worker," Trump said.
Trump also promoted his administration's deregulation efforts, which he characterized as part of a broader plan to "restore the bonds of trust between our citizens and their government." These same regulations, according to the president, are also standing in the way of a major infrastructure rebuilding plan.
Trump called on the nation to reclaim "our building heritage," saying: "We will build gleaming new roads, bridges, highways, railways, and waterways across our land. And we will do it with American heart, American hands and American grit."