President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union Address is still more than three weeks away and already Democrats are bailing on him.
At least one Democrat, Oregon’s Rep. Earl Blumenauer, said he plans to boycott the annual address.
“Rather than listening to another destructive, divisive speech by Trump, I will not attend this year’s annual address to Congress,” Oregon Rep. Earl Blumenauer said in a statement. “Instead, like I did during his inauguration, I’ll be working at home listening to Oregonians about what they think about the State of the Union!”
“Hearing from Oregonians and working together to protect our values and advance policies that actually strengthen our communities is a more productive use of my time,” Blumenauer said.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that Democrats have tossed aside tradition and opted to boycott a speech by the President. More than 60 leftist lawmakers boycotted President Trump’s inauguration after his shocking victory over Hillary Clinton in November 2018.
Democrats also boycotted the president’s first address to a joint session of Congress. Rep. Maxine Waters famously told people she doubted she would be able to keep her composure. “The president is not going to say what I want him to say,” Waters said. “He’s gonna take credit for everything.”
We can expect other Democrats to follow Blumenauer’s lead and say they’re going to boycott the State of the Union.
The State of the Union Address is scheduled for Tuesday, January 30.
The Constitution states that the president “shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union.” The tradition of delivering the address in-person was revived by President Woodrow Wilson in 1913.
The speech will provide Trump the opportunity to lay out his agenda for his second year in office in a tightly choreographed setting.
President George Washington was the first to deliver a regular address before a joint session of Congress in New York in 1790.
The message used to be known as “the President’s Annual Message to Congress,” until President Franklin D. Roosevelt referred to it as the “Annual Message to Congress on the State of the Union” in 1934.
It began to be informally called the “State of the Union” message or address from 1942 to 1946, and since 1947, it has officially been known as the State of the Union Address.
The date for this year’s speech was set by House Speaker Paul Ryan in an invitation to Trump.
“We are in the midst of a historic effort to provide relief to hardworking taxpayers, grow our economy, and rebuild our military for the 21st century,” Ryan said in a letter to the president Thursday inviting him to give the speech. “Looking ahead, the new year will bring an opportunity to take account of the progress we have made but also lay out the work that still remains to be done on behalf of the American people.”
What do you think? Does it matter if Democrats boycott the State of the Union? Sound off below and let us know!
Source: The Federalist Papers
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