President Donald Trump Addresses A Joint Session Of Congress: “A New Chapter Of American Greatness Is Now Beginning”

President Donald Trump has addressed a joint session of the United States Congress, undertaking to deliver on his campaign promises. The soaring speech has been described by some commentators as marking the moment Trump assumed the mantle of the presidency.

Trump

Trump maintained his commitment to repealing the Affordable Care Act – Obamacare – and reiterated many of his election campaign themes to “drain the swamp” in Washington DC.

Trump said “ninety-four million Americans are out of the labour force”. He outlined a one trillion dollar infrastructure program he will submit to Congress. He said: “I believe strongly in free trade but it also has to be FAIR TRADE.” He said his motto would be to “buy American and hire American”.

The president reiterated his commitment to building a “great wall” along the border with Mexico. He lauded the process of “extreme vetting” of immigrants.

Trump committed himself to America’s allies, “but our partners must meet their financial obligations”.

The speech offered no proposals on spending or taxation, or on deficit reduction. Trump said his economic team was working on “historic reform” to taxation and he pledged a big reduction in company tax.

Trump honoured the widow of a Navy Seal, William “Ryan” Owens, killed in a raid in Yemen. He said, “Ryan died as he lived: a warrior, and a hero –- battling against terrorism and securing our Nation.” The tribute led to an unprecedentedly lengthy standing ovation for Carryn Owens.

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Prepared text of President Donald Trump’s Address to a Joint Session of Congress.

TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES:

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, Members of Congress, the First Lady of the United States, and Citizens of America:

Tonight, as we mark the conclusion of our celebration of Black History Month, we are reminded of our Nation’s path toward civil rights and the work that still remains. Recent threats targeting Jewish Community Centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, as well as last week’s shooting in Kansas City, remind us that while we may be a Nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms. [Read more…]


Full List Of United States Senators – 2016

This table shows the full list of United States senators, as of August 2016.

The 50 states have two senators each, for a total of 100. Senators serve 6-year terms, with one-third facing the electorate every two years.

The table below shows the number of senators in each class and their party affiliation. Class 3 was elected in 2010 and faces election this year, on the same day as the presidential election. Class 2 was elected in 2014 and faces election in 2020. Class 1 was elected in 2012 and faces election in 2018.

U.S. Senate Numbers 2016
Class Republicans Democrats Independents TOTAL
Class 1 – Election 2018
8
23
2
33
Class 2 – Election 2020
22
11
33
Class 3 – Election 2016
24
10
34
TOTAL
54
44
2
100

The Republicans currently control the Senate, with 54 members. The Democrats have 44 and there are two independents (including Bernie Sanders) who caucus with them. The Democrats need to win 5 extra seats at this year’s election to win control.

If Hillary Clinton becomes president, the Democrats can take control of the Senate with 4 gains and the casting vote of Vice-President Kaine, in his capacity as President of the Senate. [Read more…]


U.S. Congress Passes Fiscal Cliff Legislation; Obama Says It’s Just First Step

The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation which prevents income tax increases on the bulk of Americans and also prevents large cuts in government programs.

The fiscal cliff crisis was resolved for now when the House approved legislation passed late on New Year’s Eve by the Senate. The House vote was 257 to 167, with 85 Republicans voting with 172 Democrats to allow incomes taxes to increase for the first time in 20 years. The No vote consisted of 151 Republicans and 16 Democrats.

The legislation passed the Senate at 2am on New Year’s Day by 89 votes to 8.

The legislation increases taxes on household incomes over $400,000 for individuals and $450,000 for couples. It makes permanent tax cuts for incomes below that level. The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 also delays the budget sequestration by two months. The tax increases are expected to raise $600 billion over ten years, about one-fifth of the revenue that would have resulted from no action. It was widely believed that a failure to act could have led to a recession in the U.S.

Following the House vote, President Barack Obama held a media briefing just before midnight. Whilst praising the passage of the legislation, he said there was more to be done on reducing the nation’s budget deficit.

Post from Colleen Curtis on the White House blog.

What You Need to Know About the Bipartisan Tax Agreement

UPDATE: The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 was also passed by a bipartisan majority in the House of Representatives on January 1, 2013.

President Obama has repeatedly called this a make-or-break moment for the middle class. That’s why we worked with Republicans and Democrats in Congress to reach an agreement that keeps income taxes low for the middle class and helps to grow the economy. And as the President promised, millionaires and billionaires will also begin doing more to help pay down the deficit through a combination of permanent tax rate increases and reduced tax benefits. [Read more…]


Julia Gillard’s Address to the Joint Meeting of the US Congress

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has delivered a 35 minute speech to a joint meeting of the United States Congress. [Read more…]


John Boehner Becomes Speaker Of The US House Of Representatives

John Boehner has taken over as the new Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Boehner was introduced by Nancy Pelosi, the outgoing Democratic Speaker.

The new Speaker then addressed the House. [Read more…]


State Of The Union Address 2010 – President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama delivered his first State of the Union Address on Janaury 27, 2010.

It was one year and one week since his inauguration on January 20, 2009. [Read more…]


Democrats Say Bush Failed To Provide Plans For Future Of Iraq

President Bush “failed to provide either a plan to successfully end the war or a convincing rationale to continue it”, according to Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed.

Delivering the Democratic Party response to Bush’s address, Reed said “an endless and unlimited military presence in Iraq is not an option”. [Read more…]