Washington DC: US President Joe Biden delivered a strong State of the Union (SOTU) Address on Tuesday (Local Time) assuring the American people and the world that the US was strong and in control under his presidency.
The SOTU is the single biggest speech in US and riddled with low approval ratings and doubts over his fitness levels, so Biden delivered an energy booster that he can finish the job and that he is preparing the ground for re-election in 2024.
He focused on people-centric issues from medicare, lowering the cost of prescription drugs to stopping airlines and hotels from overcharging consumers he struck a chord.
He vowed to ban assault weapons and delivered a warning to China and Russia and spoke about ‘Make in America’.
He flagged immigration reforms, and also hinted that he was keen to sit with the Republicans to steer a bipartisan agenda.
Key Takeaways from Biden’s State of the Union Speech:
- “Today, Covid-19 no longer controls our lives.”
- The US economy is better positioned to grow than any ‘on Earth’ despite disruptions from Covid-19 and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
Highlighted the “serious challenges” America faces “across the world” and warned China that Washington “will act to protect sovereignty if threatened” by Beijing.
“If China threatens our sovereignty, we will act to protect our country. Let’s be clear, winning the competition with China should unite all of us. We face serious challenges across the world. In the past two years, democracies have become stronger, not weaker.”
“Not anymore. I’ve made clear with President Xi that we seek competition, not conflict.”
WORKING WITH REPUBLICANS
- The US democracy is in better shape than when he took office in 2021, shortly after Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol in the January 6 attack.
- “Two years ago, democracy faced its greatest threat since the civil war and today, though bruised, our democracy remains unbowed and unbroken.”
- Republicans invited to work with Biden, decrying “fighting for the sake of fighting” in Washington, DC. “Republican friends, we could work together.”
CAPPING INSULIN PRICE
- Call for capping the price of insulin at $35 for all Americans after a law came into effect that limited the cost for seniors on Medicare, a healthcare programme mostly for elderly Americans.
- “Let’s finish the job this time. Let’s cap the cost… for everybody at $35. Big Pharma is still going to do very well, I promise you.”
MAKE IN AMERICA
- The US should lead the world in manufacturing after years of bleeding factory jobs.
- “Where’s it written that America can’t lead the world and manufacturing? For too many decades, we imported products and exported jobs.”