Congressmember Salud Carbajal referred to President Trump’s State of the Union Address on Tuesday night as “lies, contradictions, fabrications, and division.” “It’s the same old thing,” said Carbajal about what he described as Trump’s immigrant fearmongering. Trump spoke of immigrants, saying he wanted them to come to the country legally, but those who were in the country illegally were depleting our resources and overcrowding our schools. Trump invited a family to attend the speech and shared their story about how their loved one had been the victim of a crime committed by an undocumented immigrant. Trump referred to immigrants as “criminal illegal aliens.” “He’s painting all immigrants with the same brush and characterizing them as criminals,” said Carbajal.
While Trump’s speech mentioned bipartisanship and the importance of unity, the congressmember did not buy Trump’s plea to unite the nation. “His actions the last two years couldn’t characterize more different tones,” said Carbajal, mentioning Trump’s attack on the civil rights of LGBTQ communities, women, and immigrants. Trump mentioned the Mueller investigation as a factor that’s keeping the nation divided. Carbajal was appalled Trump would call for a stop to the investigation, calling his tactic “ludicrous and self-serving.”
Carbajal was also moved by the things Trump did not say. “There was no mention of climate change, not once, but he talked about all he’s doing for oil,” said Carbajal. Only 10 days away from another potential government shutdown, Trump made no mention of his commitment to keep the government open. He did speak at length about the importance and necessity of his border wall, saying, “Walls save lives.” Carbajal thinks Trump is leaning toward declaring a national emergency to get the funding for his wall. “I hope enough Republicans understand the peril and precedent this would set,” he said.
There were several things Trump mentioned that Carbajal does support. “Family leave and infrastructure could be positive,” said Carbajal, “but the devil’s in the details, and he won’t give any details.” Overall, Trump used this opportunity to deliver a reelection speech, said Carbajal. “He was feeding his base.”