How Donald Trump loomed over the state of the union

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump woke up Wednesday morning basking in the opprobrium of the entire Washington political establishment.

The reality-TV-star-turned-presidential contender was not just the unspoken target of Barack Obama's state of the union address.

See Full Article

He was also the unnamed antagonist in his own party's reply to the speech, delivered by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

Both speeches warned against immigrant- and minority-bashing in a country that owes much of its historic prosperity to the labour of immigrants.

From hundreds of kilometres away, Trump once again managed to wiggle his way into the centre of Washington's political conversation.

And he scoffed in the general direction of its disdain.

"The state of the union speech was one of the most boring, rambling and non-substantive I have heard in a long time. New leadership fast!" he tweeted.

Trump called Haley weak on illegal immigration in a "Today Show" interview. He also mused that she was off to a bad start if she wanted to be his pick for vice-president.

Trump has horrified the political establishment with his call for the mass-deportation of undocumented Latino migrants and a freeze on Muslim travel to the U.S.

The reaction to Tuesday's speeches showed that the starkest divisions in U.S. politics aren't merely between the parties -- but within them, as Republican elites align against much of their party rank-and-file.

Haley reminded viewers that she was the daughter of immigrants from India.

And she, the Republican party's chosen spokesperson for the biggest evening on the U.S. political calendar, delivered a staunchly pro-immigrant message that declared no foreigner willing to work hard should feel unwelcome in the U.S.

"During anxious times, it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices. We must resist that temptation," she said.

Haley confirmed Wednesday that Trump was one of the people she had in mind when she uttered those words.

As for Obama, he delivered a riff on Trump's campaign slogan -- "Make America Great Again."

In his final speech to Congress, the president said that the genius of the country was its perennial willingness to embrace change -- and ability to ignore the angriest anti-foreign voices "promising to restore past glory."

Obama then specifically mentioned Muslims.

"We need to reject any politics that targets people because of race or religion," he said.

"When politicians insult Muslims, when a mosque is vandalized, or a kid bullied, that doesn't make us safer. That's not telling it like it is. It's just wrong."

Democrats in the chamber cheered loudly. Behind Obama, the Republican congressional leader Paul Ryan gently nodded to signal his agreement.

These are sensitive topics within the Republican party.

Indeed, some prominent conservative voices later expressed disbelief that the party establishment appeared to have opposed Trump -- instead of embracing his populist message.

Radio host Laura Ingraham said the party should be sympathetic to his message on illegal immigration -- and side with American workers struggling to compete with cheap foreign labour.

Conservative commentator Ann Coulter put it more crudely: "Trump should deport Nikki Haley."

And that prompted the chairman of the South Carolina Republican party to defend the governor, and to call Coulter's remarks "despicable."

The divisions in the party pitting its business wing against the anti-establishment ranks will be a prominent theme in the upcoming nomination races -- which start next month in Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina.

The winner of those contests goes on to the general election, which will decide who delivers the next state of the union.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Milos Raonic cruises to 1st-round victory at Australian Open

    Canada News CBC News
    Milos Raonic and Dustin Brown renewed their Grand Slam duel Monday night (Tuesday afternoon in Australia) and the result was the same as the last time — a three-set win for the tall Canadian. Raonic and Brown met for the first time in the first round of last year's U.S. Source
  • Security Council should consider sanctions on those upsetting Mali peace: UN chief

    World News CTV News
    UNITED NATIONS -- Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is urging the UN Security Council to consider imposing sanctions on key players in Mali who are obstructing implementation of a 2015 peace agreement if there are no immediate results on the ground. Source
  • Schoolmate testifies about seeing girl

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    A second trial for a man accused of murdering 13-year-old Candace Derksen 33 years ago began Monday with testimony from a schoolmate, one of the last people to see her alive. Derksen and David Wiebe were both students at Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute. Source
  • Jennifer O’Brien is a mother on a mission [Video]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    She has every reason to fall apart, her young son and the mother she considered her “best friend” abducted and murdered, along with the step-father who helped raise her. Most would have been a puddle of emotion, to recount the heartbreaking horror Jennifer O’Brien came across the morning of June 30, 2014, and was forced to describe in grim detail before a Calgary court on Monday. Source
  • Nude woman leads cops on chase, crashes

    World News Toronto Sun
    Last week it was in Arizona, this week it’s in Michigan. Naked women leading cops on high-speed chases is becoming a thing. A 48-year-old female driver wearing nothing but her birthday suit topped speeds of 160 km/h during a hot pursuit along Interstate 75 in Michigan that went on for 40 kilometres, according to the New York Post. Source
  • Zebra found dead, skinned on California beach

    World News Toronto Sun
    SAN SIMEON, Calif. — A zebra from a herd that roams the ranch around Hearst Castle was found dead and partly skinned on a beach on California’s central coast, authorities said. The zebra died of natural causes and no foul play is suspected, the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Department said. Source
  • Time to eat the rich?

    World News Toronto Sun
    Your stomach grumbling this morning? Maybe it’s a sudden craving to “eat the rich.” Can’t blame you. Even Marie Antoinette, god bless her scawny little neck, would cringe at two revelations this week. Oxfam and other charities did the math: Source
  • Crown tells jury Douglas Garland held a longtime grudge before triple slaying [Video]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    It was a years' long grudge against Alvin Liknes over a pump design which led Douglas Garland to plot what ended in a triple-homicide, a prosecutor said Monday. Crown lawyer Vicki Faulkner told a Calgary jury Garland stewed over the fact Liknes patented the pump -- "a pump that never made anybody famous. Source
  • 6 dismembered bodies found in southern Mexico

    World News Toronto Sun
    MEXICO CITY — Authorities in southern Mexico have found the severed heads of six men in a plastic bag on the roof of a sport utility vehicle, and six headless bodies inside. The security spokesman for the southern state of Guerrero said the bodies were found Monday in Chilpancingo, the state capital. Source
  • NATO without U.S. means Canada will have to do more: Committee chair

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    OTTAWA — Canada will have to contribute more to NATO if the U.S. follows through on president-elect Donald Trump’s musings on withdrawing from the alliance, says the head of the House of Commons foreign affairs committee. Liberal MP Bob Nault cautions that Canada and its NATO partners need to see how U.S. Source