PHOTO BY: Poonam Sharma
The Hill at night

Will it be Real Donald Trump or Teleprompter Trump on the Capitol Hill on January 30 night for the State of the Union Address



Washington, DC – President Donald Trump’s maiden State of the Union address (SOTU) is a political opportunity to present his agenda for the year ahead in a “presidential tone,” or an occasion to let his thoughts roam in an extempore speech where he can lambast his critics and rise for his “followers.”

One point is fixed, that the presidential team, including his speech writers, will be working overtime to present him with a dedicated speech to read in a very “presidential” manner from teleprompters.

The unknown factor is: Something during that speech may derail the calm and sedate reading from the teleprompters, or the president might just get bored and go asymptote to the prepared points. There are many factors here which can trigger such an episode which will put social media, especially Twitter on fire.

Democrats (the sworn enemies), and even some Republicans who don’t see eye to eye with the president will be the first eye-sores. If and when someone shouts or makes a conspicuous comment during the speech, it’s not President Trump’s forte to take it silently and go on. If the president reacts, then it will be an unpredictable rambling of reactions in an unedited version of Trump Prose.

With a din and bustle filled first year in office, President Trump can do his best to stick to the teleprompter version to bullet point his priorities while filling in the blanks to rally his volatile supporters.

The speech will be watched by not only domestic and global political pundits, but also by lay-persons who wait for him to use his signature “tweet-style” of arguments for and against media reports, attacks on anyone who provokes him, and an amazing narcissistic monologue of “Trump Achievements” as a president like “no other president” before him.

With his absence from the negotiating table during the “long weekend shutdown” of the government, it is difficult for him to argue his ace deal-making skills. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have accused him of failing to be a reliable negotiator. Even Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell lamented earlier this month that it’s difficult to “figure out what he is for” regarding immigration reforms.

Addressing White House Correspondents in the Brady Press Room briefing on Monday (January 29), the Press Secretary Sarah H. Sanders said at the top of the briefing: “Looking ahead to tomorrow, as you know, the President will deliver his first State of the Union Address.” Announcing the theme of the address as, “Building a safe, strong, and proud America,” Sanders noted, “which is exactly what the President has worked to do during his first year in office.” Urging people to watch the speech, Sanders added, “I don’t want to get ahead of what the President will say during his remarks, but it will obviously be must-watch TV.”

Asked to comment on whether the “Russia Fever” gripping the nation will be included in the address, Sanders said, “In terms of the State of the Union, I’m not going to get ahead of the President’s address. It’s tomorrow night. I know you are all excited and will eagerly tune in, and can see, at that time exactly, what is going to be included.”

Over the years, other Presidents normally have been optimistic when they start saying, “The state of our union is…” When Sanders was asked what is the state of the nation that President Trump will start off his address with, she termed the state of the nation as “incredible,” adding, “I think that you’ll hear that in the President’s words tomorrow night.”

In a way listing the presidential address points, Sander elaborated, “We’ve got an economy that is booming. ISIS is on the run. We’re remaking the judiciary in a way that actually believes in upholding the Constitution. There are some great things happening in this country, and I think you can expect to hear the President talk about a lot of those — not only what we’ve been able to do in the first year, but all of the great things that we’re going to do in the next seven years after this.”

Overall, these are efforts of Trump administration to guide the words of the President from the teleprompter, but the media professionals, including our team, political pundits and both supporters as well as skeptics are waiting for the real time live performer: Will it be Real Donald Trump or Teleprompter Trump?

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