What in the State of the Union Mattered to You?


Here's a partial transcript. Do any of these topics impact your life?

VA Accountability

I signed the landmark VA Accountability Act. Since its passage, my administration has already removed more than 1,500 VA employees who failed to give our veterans the care they deserve — and we are hiring talented people who love our vets as much as we do.


Every Federal dollar should be leveraged by partnering with State and local governments and, where appropriate, tapping into private sector investment — to permanently fix the infrastructure deficit. Any bill must also streamline the permitting and approval process — getting it down to no more than two years, and perhaps even one.

Vocational Training

As tax cuts create new jobs, let us invest in workforce development and job training. Let us open great vocational schools so our future workers can learn a craft and realize their full potential. And let us support working families by supporting paid family leave.

Post-Prison Assistance

As America regains its strength, this opportunity must be extended to all citizens. That is why this year we will embark on reforming our prisons to help former inmates who have served their time get a second chance.

Access to Experimental Drugs for the Terminally Ill

To speed access to breakthrough cures and affordable generic drugs, last year the FDA approved more new and generic drugs and medical devices than ever before in our history. We also believe that patients with terminal conditions should have access to experimental treatments that could potentially save their lives. "People who are terminally ill should not have to go from country to country to seek a cure — I want to give them a chance right here at home. It is time for the Congress to give these wonderful Americans the “right to try.”

Prescription Drug Prices

In many other countries, these drugs cost far less than what we pay in the United States. That is why I have directed my administration to make fixing the injustice of high drug prices one of our top priorities. Prices will come down.

Gangs and Border Security

Tonight, I am calling on the Congress to finally close the deadly loopholes that have allowed MS-13, and other criminals, to break into our country. We have proposed new legislation that will fix our immigration laws, and support our ICE and Border Patrol Agents, so that this cannot ever happen again.

Prosecutions for Drug Dealers

In 2016, we lost 64,000 Americans to drug overdoses: 174 deaths per day. Seven per hour. We must get much tougher on drug dealers and pushers if we are going to succeed in stopping this scourge.

Military Spending

In confronting these dangers, we know that weakness is the surest path to conflict, and unmatched power is the surest means of our defense. For this reason, I am asking the Congress to end the dangerous defense sequester and fully fund our great military.

Anything else that affected you personally? Tell is in the comment section.

Comments (5)
No. 1-5

The president's beautiful story of adoption moved me. It wasn't about policy or partisanship. It was simply the story about a hero in uniform who stopped a homeless woman from injecting heroin out of concern for her and her unborn child. But it was profound in seeing how he answered the call to help this mother and child even after he took off the uniform. Watching the officer and his wife seated at the State of the Union, holding their newly adopted daughter, made me feel proud to be an American — to be part of the land that steps beyond its call of duty to practice virtue and love. The amazing and powerful moment:




Cost estimates vary between $4 trillion and up to $12 trillion, based on whether or not interest is taken into account (much of the wars were funded with borrowed money, hence the rise in the debt).


There's certainly no doubt that a national government is supposed to deal with national security, but it must do so responsibly. Its current spending habits are incredibly reckless, being so far in debt and increasing spending. No household can operate that way and survive for long, and at some point the debt is going to come around knocking.

General Mike Mullen once said that the greatest national security threat we face is the debt. If we can't pay our financial obligations, then we can't defend our country. That's of great concern to me.




@sconnell1791 - what is your citation for $20 trillion debt being "largely because of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan"? Of all the things the federal government is supposed to do, defense of the nation is first and foremost. Yes, it's the largest chunk of "discretionary" spending, meaning government can choose not to spend on it, but the amount of money put into "mandatory" spending (government set itself up as indebted to pay it despite no constitutional mandate for its existence) is more than double the amount paid on defense.



This doesn't affect me directly, but I'm still pretty adamant about my position on it. Military spending needs to either stay the same or be cut. We're $20 trillion in debt, largely because of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and are continuing to spend without parallel on military expeditions that Congress has not authorized. With all of the issues we face here at home, more of that money should be kept here. $700 billion for military spending is just too far over the top. It's time to rein in the spending and get our fiscal house in order, because it's people like me that will have to shoulder the bill eventually if it's not handled immediately.


My uncle was just sent home to hospice today. He has a brain tumor. I don't know that anything could have been done, but I know traditional radiation and chemo are so horrible. I would love to see more experimental drugs available for people who are willing to try them out. Plus, fewer rats tortured. But that to me is a big deal. I don't want to go to Costa Rica for life-saving treatment. I want every opportunity available at home.