Published On: Mon, Feb 10th, 2020

Strong economy, trade deals, deregulation highlight 2020 SOTU Address

By Carlo Barbieri

President Donald Trump used dynamic, kind and vigorous verbal communication in the United States of America during his 2020 State of the Union Address this past Tuesday night.

Spotlighting the durable economy and trade deals he has hammed out with nations near and far, the 45th President faced a nation at a critical time. This year will bring about the first election that will test Trump’s viability and capacity to gain re-election. The speech also took place on the night before the President was acquitted of two articles of impeachment drafted and promoted by major Democratic officials, including a majority of the House of Representatives.

He also brought to the venerable chambers of government some men, women and children who have performed enviably and earned accolades. His recognition of philanthropist and radio talk show icon Rush Limbaugh, recently diagnosed with advanced lung cancer, was touching and powerful.

Most of all, Trump highlighted the nation’s economic viability – something he said he has presided over and which he promises to continue.

“In just three short years, we have shattered the mentality of American decline and we have rejected the downsizing of America’s destiny,” Trump said at the podium in front of a joint gather of U.S. Representatives and Senators. “We are moving forward at a pace that was unimaginable just a short time ago, and we are never going back.”

“Our country is thriving and highly respected again,” Trump said. “The years of economic decay are over.” He emphasized: “The state of the union is stronger than ever before.” Trump defined the nation’s financial success as “a blue-collar boom.

Here are a couple of quotes from Trump, with elaboration provided by the publication, Politico:

Real median household income is now at the highest level ever recorded.”  True. It reached $61,937 in 2018, only the second year since the 2008 financial crisis that that figure has exceeded income levels prior to the crisis. The percentage of Americans with incomes below the poverty level also dropped for the fifth consecutive year, declining to 13.1 percent in 2018 from 13.4 percent the year before.

America has now gained 12,000 new factories under my administration with thousands of thousands of plants and factories being planned or being built.” — True, based on most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But that data is from the second quarter of 2019. After that, the manufacturing sector contracted for five months and only just inched back into expansion in December.

Other comments about the employment situation:

  • A total of 6.7 million more Americans are employed today compared to when Trump first took office, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • The economy is adding jobs at a robust pace with many employers struggling to fill open positions in a tight labor market and [where] older Americans retire in greater numbers.

Trump allotted a segment of his speech to his reduction of regulations that stand in the way of progress, particularly the rules that inhibit businesses from growing. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who recently released financial figures for the last quarter of 2019, said “real growth for the year reached 2.1% in Q4 and 2.3% for the entire year.

The President also said that during his time in office, America has become energy self-sufficient, finally freeing itself from the heavy-handed oil market in the Middle East. As Trump said in his SOTU: Thanks to our bold regulatory reduction campaign, the United States has become the No. 1 producer of oil and natural gas anywhere in the world, by far.”

Further explaining that claim, the New York Times said: “The United States is the top producer of oil and natural gas, but according to the Energy Information Administration, the US became the world’s top oil producer in 2013 and overtook Russia as the world’s leading gas producer as far back as 2009.”

Among Trump’s guests at his State of the Union address were Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido. The President dedicated a portion of the speech to him, introducing him as the “true and legitimate president of Venezuela.”

“Mr. President,” said Trump, “please take this message back to your homeland. All Americans are united with the Venezuelan people in their righteous struggle for freedom. Socialism destroys nations. But always remember, freedom unifies the soul.”

Other guests at the SOTU, according to a list provided by the White House, included military families, a 100-year-old pilot who was one of the original Tuskegee Airmen and “hardworking local leaders.”

In the American economy, maintained the momentum expressed in the State of Union, President Donald Trump will have a real chance for his re-election.

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About the Author

- My name is Carlo Barbieri, an entrepreneur, civic activist and a leader of many organizations associated with Brazil. A native of Brazil myself, I am currently the CEO of Oxford Group, a firm composed of many international consulting and trading companies. I am also a founding member of the Brazilian Business Group and founding member and Past President of the Brazil Club. In addition, I serve as a Board member of the Deerfield Chamber of Commerce. I have served as a member of the Florida Chamber of Commerce and the Florida Brazil Partnership. Past President of the Rotary Club – Boca Raton West for the 2014-2015 term, I have also been Vice President and Professor of 2Grow – Human Development. An Ambassador of Barry University in Brazil, I am the former President of the Black Fire Bull Steak House. I have also presided over a number of organizations such as the Brazilian Association of Trading Companies (ABECE), Brazil-China Chamber of Commerce in São Paulo, Brazil-Australia Chamber of Commerce, Brazil-Dominican Republican Chamber of Commerce; director of the Trade Center of the State of São Paulo, Brazilian Association of Freight Forwarders and Brazilian Association of Banks. I was also a local Council member for the Consulate General of Brazil in Miami, for the 2013-2017 term.

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