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President Trump’s  on Tuesday (2/05) was easily the best State of the Union address I’ve ever seen – and I watched all of Ronald Reagan’s.

But, as you can see, it wasn’t a good night for Bernie Sanders, Ms. Occasional Cortex, and all the other Dems including Pelosi who grimaced and refused to stand.

A SOTU is a speechwriter’s nightmare. It consists of a laundry list of the president’s (alleged) accomplishments, followed by wish list of the bills the president wants Congress to pass. It’s hard to weave a coherent, uplifting theme into that mishmash.

And SOTUs are too long. They last, typically, an hour or so. One of the first rules of the thumb I learned as a fledgling speechwriter was nobody is interesting after 20 minutes.

There are exceptions to every rule. President Trump spoke for 82 minutes, the longest SOTU since Bill Clinton spoke for 84 minutes in 2000. Clinton’s SOTU that year was excruciating. But, for me, time flew by Tuesday night.

Time flew because it seemed the president was having a conversation with us, not making a formal speech. (It seemed that way in part because Trump did have conversations with most of the guests he invited.)

This brilliant SOTU was the result of speaking what you believe – not what others think you should say,” said Jeff Carlson.

Trump was genuine. But this was also the most carefully, cleverly crafted SOTU I’ve ever seen. From the selection of the president’s guests, his interchanges with them, and his subtle trolling of Democrats, Team Trump left nothing to chance.

The speech was the de facto start of the president’s re-election campaign. It’s off to a rousing start. About a third of American households tuned in. An instant poll by CBS of its viewers indicated 76 percent approved of what they heard.

Actually, the breakdown showed it was even much better:

A CNN instant poll found that 59 percent of viewers had a very positive reaction to the speech, 17 percent had a somewhat positive reaction. Only 23 percent didn’t like it.

The libs at Deadline Hollywood were in a snit about the huge size of Trump’s audience (46.8 million) and the fact it outdrew Zero’s second SOTU by 9 percentage points.

Democrats didn’t expect the president’s call for unity, didn’t respond to it well.

Things my Democrat women colleagues wouldn’t clap for: America, freedom, free enterprise, law enforcement heroes, record low unemployment for women and minorities, the right of babies to live,” said Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo). “Things they did clap for: themselves.”

Here’s Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) shaking her head after Trump called for stopping drug cartels and human trafficking. Bad optics.

Key takeaway from the SOTU was the stark contrast between Trump’s presidential command of the issues & the Democrats’ pouty and whiny behavior,” said Snake Plissken.

The SOTU wasn’t especially conservative. I could imagine Jack Kennedy giving it, or Scoop Jackson or John Glenn, had either been president. It’s only very recently (circa 2009) that Democrats have opposed secure borders, championed infanticide.

It wasn’t so long ago Republicans would have looked askance at paid family leave, big spending on infrastructure. Before Trump, prison reform was not on the conservative agenda. We’d have wanted to hear details before embracing a plan to roll back prescription drug prices.

I don’t doubt the president genuinely and strongly supports all the initiatives he laid out Tuesday night. But it wouldn’t be possible to craft an agenda that would appeal more to independents (72 percent did, according to the CBS poll), or to moderate Democrats (43 percent, CBS said).

Nor could a SOTU have been designed better to drive a wedge between the corrupt Commies who run the Democrat party today, and the moderates among the Dems elected to Congress last November.

Schumer and Pelosi have been able to maintain a remarkable degree of party unity because of the leftist establishment’s ironclad grip on the party’s finances. Deviate from the party line, good luck raising funds for your next election.

All newly elected Dems campaigned on a pledge to “end gridlock” in Washington. Most were lying, but more than a few weren’t. And some who were lying know that if they don’t demonstrate some bipartisanship soon, they won’t be re-elected.

Trump and Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney have been meeting quietly with some House Democrats who know that outside of San Francisco and Manhattan the president’s plans for border security are wildly popular, likely to be the most important issue in 2020.

Trump hopes enough of these Dems will defect, so Pelosi will be forced to include funding for a border wall in a deal to end the government “shutdown.”

It remains to be seen if enough of these Dems will fear the wrath of the voters more than they fear the wrath of the big donors. But since the SOTU, it’s more likely. More have seen the real obstructionists in action.

Democrats may not agree to a wall, said Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Tex), but may agree to a “fence,” or an “enhanced barrier.”

I bet a “fence” or an “enhanced barrier” will be more appealing to Dems in Congress after President Trump’s rally in El Paso this coming Monday (2/11).

According to this poll, 61 percent of voters in congressional districts that flipped to Democrats in 2018 support the president’s plans for border security.

Trump and Mulvaney are getting help in sowing dissension among Democrats from the Democrats themselves. So many plan to run for president Dems will have to hold their presidential debates in a football stadium. And they’re tearing each other up.

Among those planning to run is Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI). She has zero chance, but just to be sure, Hillary Clinton cronies are claiming she is a puppet of the Russians.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) plans to announce her candidacy this weekend. Which prompted this catty smear in Slate.

Fauxcahontas is effectively finished over after this emerged Wednesday (2/6).

The efforts of the Lying Swine to gaslight those who didn’t watch the SOTU have been hilarious.  Consider this “fact check.” And these. David Harsanyi dissects the fact check fraud here.

Democrats had a bad night Tuesday. The frequent standing ovations the president received from Republicans in the House and Senate make it clear the GOP is Trump’s party now.


Jack Kelly is a former Marine and Green Beret and a former deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration. He is national security writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.