Post-State of the Union speech: a new Washington...or same old swamp?


    President Donald Trump shakes hands with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as Vice President Mike Pence looks on, as he arrives in the House chamber before giving his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 at the Capitol in Washington. (Doug Mills/The New York Times via AP, Pool)

    WASHINGTON (SBG) - Are you looking at a different Washington? A new possible level of cooperation in Congress, an openness to cross the aisle?

    In President Trump’s State of the Union speech Tuesday, he said Americans are “hoping we will govern not as two parties, but as one nations.”

    We talked with two dozen lawmakers, post speech, from both parties including rookies and veterans.

    “I’m part of this new class that came in, frustrated by the stonewalling in Washington D.C and we’re in here as the change makers,” expressed a hopeful, freshman lawmaker, Rep. Kim Schrier, D-Washington.

    House minority leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said “I think they have a different opinion. That doesn’t mean they’re going to love him tomorrow but I think they walk away with a better impression of him than when they walked into that chamber.”

    Some watching at home, may agree a bit. While more republicans than democrats responded, instant polling by CBS showed 76 percent approved of the speech and 59 percent in a CNN poll.

    President Donald Trump talks to Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts while leaving the House chamber after giving his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 at the Capitol in Washington. (Doug Mills/The New York Times via AP, Pool)

    Though could any progress be erased with just one jabbing tweet?

    “I think we need to in a sense ignore the president’s bluster, ignore his words, ignore the sometimes, outrageous things,” said Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Mich, “and just go with what he’s willing to do.”

    In that case, several members from both parties believe they can find common ground. On issues that they each desperately want action.

    Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, said “I think we can build that bridge, literally, over the infrastructure package.”

    President Donald Trump address a joint session of Congress, Tuesday Feb. 5, 2019 at his second State of the Union (Courtesy: Sinclair Broadcast Group)

    Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, cited examples with a caveat. “He mentioned pediatric cancer and HIV/AIDS.” Asked if she can get on board with those issues: “Absolutely, but again, there has to be leadership.”

    Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said many in his party look at it like this: while “optimism is low, hope is high.”

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