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Westlake Legal Group > News Media (Page 286)

U.S. Trade Deficit Shrinks Amid Trump Trade War

Westlake Legal Group 05dc-trade-facebookJumbo-v2 U.S. Trade Deficit Shrinks Amid Trump Trade War United States Economy International Trade and World Market Imports Factories and Manufacturing exports Customs (Tariff) China

WASHINGTON — The overall United States trade deficit shrank last year as the American economy cooled and President Trump waged an aggressive global trade war to rewrite America’s trading terms.

The trade deficit for both goods and services fell to to $616.8 billion in 2019, down $10.9 billion from the previous year, according to data released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday.

Both imports and exports fell as American factory activity slowed and businesses and consumers felt the impact of tariffs imposed on China, the European Union, Canada, Mexico and elsewhere. Total American exports dropped $1.5 billion to roughly $2.5 trillion, while imports fell $12.5 billion to $3.1 trillion.

The most dramatic changes in trade last year occurred with China, the target of Mr. Trump’s biggest economic offensive.

The trade deficit in goods with China shrank $73.9 billion to $345.6 billion in 2019. It was the first drop on an annual basis since 2016, as both the United States and China placed tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of each others’ products.

American imports from China fell sharply in the final two months of the year, as companies worked to avoid tariffs that Mr. Trump has placed on $360 billion worth of Chinese goods.

Rather than bringing manufacturing back to the United States, the clash with China has caused American companies and consumers to shift purchases to other countries, like Mexico, Vietnam and South Korea instead, said Mary E. Lovely, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

Data released Wednesday morning showed the trade deficit with Mexico increased $21.1 billion last year to $101.8 billion as the United States brought in more goods from its southern neighbor.

“You’re going to see this rearrangement of the deck chairs,” Ms. Lovely said.

Mr. Trump has long pointed to the United States trade deficit — the gap between what America exports and what it imports — as proof that America is at a competitive disadvantage because of unfair practices by China and other countries. In Mr. Trump’s view, American businesses would be making more at home and consumers would be buying more domestic goods if countries like China weren’t subsidizing their industries and manipulating their currencies.

But economists have argued that the figure is a poor metric for measuring the health of the economy or America’s trading relationships. While a falling trade deficit can be a sign of a growing economy, the measure can fall for a variety of other reasons, many of them unrelated to trade and not all of them positive.

Speaking at an event at George Washington University on Tuesday, Janet L. Yellen, the former Federal Reserve chair, said that the bilateral trade deficit between the United States and China was “not the proper focus.”

Ms. Yellen said that Mr. Trump and some of his advisers see the trade gap “as a symptom of relationships being unfair.” But for many economists, a country’s overall trade deficit with the rest of the world just means that the country is spending more than the output it can produce itself, she said.

“Most economists think that a country’s savings and investment are decisions that aren’t affected by trade policy,” she said.

Brad Setser, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, said that a falling trade deficit can sometimes be a sign of the kind of manufacturing boom that the Trump administration has been trying to engineer. In that case, American factory production would be rising, displacing foreign products from the American market and causing imports to fall.

But that is not the situation the United States finds itself in, he said. Instead, factory activity has been weak, and both American imports and exports have contracted, he said.

In addition, tariffs and trade uncertainty appear to have cut into business investment, slowing economic growth.

“Tariffs to date have clearly had a significant impact on imports from China,” Mr. Setser said. “They equally clearly have not led to a stronger U.S. manufacturing sector.”

Jeanna Smialek contributed reporting from Washington.

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Former ‘Simpsons’ writer slams Pompeo tweet: ‘Please do not ever ever ever use Simpsons material’

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Tucker Carlson: Democrats screw up the Iowa caucuses, then blame the voters. They truly are a disaster

Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson: Democrats screw up the Iowa caucuses, then blame the voters. They truly are a disaster Tucker Carlson fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/iowa fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight/transcript/tuckers-monologue fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 269d2f3c-9323-532b-af3c-a1c18d2daebc

Did you ever suspect in your heart that liberals were basically disorganized and incompetent? The kind of people who hate their dads and leave dirty dishes in the sink and have crumbs in their beds?

It turns out you had no idea. It’s so much worse than that. They’re a disaster.

BUTTIGIEG AND SANDERS LEADING IOWA DEMOCRATIC CAUCUSES, AS PARTY RELEASES INITIAL RESULTS AFTER MASSIVE DELAY

The people who want to control your health care couldn’t organize naptime for a six-year-old. They can’t find the airport. They’re baffled by the instructions of a washing machine.

What happens when you put them in charge of an entire caucus in Iowa? Well, the first thing they do is pay former Hillary staffer $63,000.00 to develop a vote-counting app that doesn’t work. Then they use the chaos that results to attack and humiliate their own voters.

And then they elevate a 38-year-old finance puppet and pretend he is the frontrunner. If there’s a short-term winner emerging from Iowa, it’s probably that candidate, Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, the hand-selected choice of Democratic donors to fight the Bernie Sanders insurgency.

Democratic leaders blew it spectacularly, therefore, Democratic voters must pay. Sense a theme here? That’s always the way it works. They screw up, you get punished.

Buttigieg already sees himself as anointed by God to take power, something he has been planning assiduously since eighth grade. He didn’t wait until the results were tabulated to declare a victory. He went ahead and did it anyway Monday night.

Pete Buttigieg, South Bend, Ind. mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate: Looking out at you, and remembering how it felt to be an Indiana teenager, wondering if you would ever belong in this world. Wondering if something deep inside him meant that he would forever be an outsider, that he might never wear the uniform, never be accepted, never even know love.

And now that same person is standing in front of you, a mayor, a veteran, happily married and one step closer to becoming the next president of the United States.

Another child of privilege telling you how oppressed he is. Son of a college professor. Okay.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE OPINION NEWSLETTER

Pretty much nobody, meanwhile, thought Elizabeth Warren was going to win Monday night, and the results this afternoon confirmed that she didn’t, proving once again that even Democratic voters have standards, and there is, in fact, a god.

But Warren claimed victory Monday night nonetheless. In her speech, she made certain to brag about the illegal aliens her campaign had hired.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren. D-Mass.: Tonight is for every undocumented, unafraid organizer and volunteer who proudly knocked on doors to let the world know that the path to progress runs through courage, not fear.

Oh, cliche confirmed! It turns out it is true that illegal aliens do the jobs that Americans won’t do. Godspeed to them. As long as they’re not planning for long term employment with Elizabeth Warren — that gig won’t last.

Why does everyone on television hate these poor Iowans all of a sudden? It’s not like they’re powerful and menacing. Just the opposite – they’re just voters. The problem, of course, is that they are some of the few people left in this country who still believe it’s a democracy, and they’re annoying that way — and inconvenient.

The whole debacle Monday night was entirely unnerving for the press watching from their studios. It’s the home team they’re covering, remember, so when things go wrong in a Democratic primary, it hurts them personally.

Wolf Blitzer, CNN anchor: No results at all from the Iowa caucus. It is a huge, huge embarrassment for the Iowa Democratic Party.

Joe Scarborough, MSNBC host: Was there election interference? Did somebody try to hack into the app?

Jonathan Lemire, MSNBC political analyst: This is a disaster on every level. This is the first step. They botched it.

Van Jones, CNN political analyst: This is starting to feel like, you know, possibly a real debacle where if there’s some technical problems that they’re not disclosing …

David Chalian, CNN political director: We have to start asking the questions. Has it been infected in any way? Has there been any kind of interference? We have no — we don’t know that.

Al Sharpton, MSNBC host: Whatever the results come out, it will almost not matter because it will be under a cloud now. And what about the people of Iowa?

Chris Matthews, MSNBC host: The guy in the White House is chuckling all night here, showing the Democrats can’t even get a three-car funeral organized or whatever you want to call it.

Well, the last person leaving Des Moines, please turn out the lights. This has not been a success.

Oh, gosh, that doesn’t sound good. How bad was it Monday night? Well, Chuck Todd appealed to God Himself live on air. Here’s his prayer.

Reporter: We also need to talk about the Mike Bloomberg factors, which is —

Chuck Todd, MSNBC host: Oh my god.

Reporter:  — the fact that he is now waiting in the wings …

Todd: What an effing disaster.

Nicely put, Chuck. That’s exactly what it is.

But keep in mind, things weren’t always this way. For 50 years, the Iowa caucuses ran smoothly, using 19th Century technology. They had paper ballots, they phoned in the results.

And then the tech geniuses got involved. They promised to make it a lot easier and way more efficient. Just like iPads are going to make your kids smarter. How’d that work out?

Of course, you can’t complain about this in public; it’s unwise to criticize our overlords in Silicon Valley — those merchants have a brighter future who somehow make our lives worse, year by year. It can’t be their fault.

So instead, the people on TV decided to blame Iowa voters. You saw a parade of the smartest people in America telling you that the Iowa mess was proof that Iowa as a state shouldn’t be allowed to hold the first presidential contest anymore.

Democratic leaders blew it spectacularly, therefore, Democratic voters must pay. Sense a theme here? That’s always the way it works. They screw up, you get punished.

And by the way, those voters we just shafted, they explained Monday night, they’re racist. They deserve what they got and what we’re taking from them.

Matthews: Twenty-five percent of the Democratic voters are African- American, and they’re not really in the game. I mean, that’s really awful.

You talk about voter suppression. This is it. Jason is right. It’s voter suppression. You’re saying black people vote last.

More from Opinion

Sunny Hostin, co-host of “The View”: Iowa, you know, just isn’t representative of the Democratic tent, and that’s the problem that I’ve had. I mean, you know, it’s — if you look at the population, it’s about 90.7 percent white.

Van Jones: Why Iowa in the first place? It’s 90 percent white. You know, when you have a party as diverse as this to be in a state that’s not diverse, it is terrible.

Terry McAuliffe, CNN political commentator: Ninety percent of the caucus-goers today were white, so it’s way skewed out of line.

Zerlina Maxwell, MSNBC political analyst: The Iowa caucus is essentially the perfect example of systemic racism — 91 percent of the voters in Iowa are white.

The reason why you see a drop in turnout, I’m just speculating here, it could be perhaps that white children are not in the cages.

Oh, man. You thought you were just voting in an election. It turns out you’re participating in systemic racism. Take that, you hopelessly pallid Iowa Democrats.

Keep in mind that thousands of these now totally immoral voters spent the entire past year going door to door for their favorite candidates for free. Why did they do that? Because they cared.

In return, they’re being denounced by rich phonies like Terry McAuliffe, who, by the way, is famous in Washington mostly for not going to jail. Why does everyone on television hate these poor Iowans all of a sudden? It’s not like they’re powerful and menacing. Just the opposite – they’re just voters.

The problem, of course, is that they are some of the few people left in this country who still believe it’s a democracy, and they’re annoying that way — and inconvenient. In fact, they’re one of the few remaining barriers between the party and its preferred vessels, like Pete Buttigieg and Mike Bloomberg. Psyched for that?

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

As if on cue Tuesday, Bloomberg announced that in the wake of Monday night’s meltdown, he is going to double his daily ad spending. Nothing like a crisis to seize an opportunity.

The anchors on CNN will be thrilled by the news. Finally, someone they can relate to.

Adapted from Tucker Carlson’s monologue from “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Feb. 4, 2020.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM TUCKER CARLSON

Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson: Democrats screw up the Iowa caucuses, then blame the voters. They truly are a disaster Tucker Carlson fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/iowa fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight/transcript/tuckers-monologue fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 269d2f3c-9323-532b-af3c-a1c18d2daebc   Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson: Democrats screw up the Iowa caucuses, then blame the voters. They truly are a disaster Tucker Carlson fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/iowa fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight/transcript/tuckers-monologue fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/politics fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 269d2f3c-9323-532b-af3c-a1c18d2daebc

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Bozell & Graham: Trump impeachment exercise was one-side and partisan. So was the press

Westlake Legal Group image Bozell & Graham: Trump impeachment exercise was one-side and partisan. So was the press Tim Graham fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics fox-news/opinion fox-news/media fnc/opinion fnc Creators Syndicate Brent Bozell article 28424c58-9a4e-5e36-b805-7d7854dfad72

As the impeachment effort against President Donald Trump inevitably burns out on the ash heap of history, Democrats are being left to argue that if this president is left unchecked, if he’s not removed from office, he’ll “do it again.” He’ll pressure foreign governments to investigate the business dealings of the Bidens, which is a “threat to national security.”

National security equals no questioning of the Bidens. Democracy equals removing an elected president.

A typical outburst came from CNN’s appointed presidential historian, Douglas Brinkley, who warned that acquittal would mean “the country has a president who operates as an outlaw … acting in a demagogic way and as acting in a dictatorial way, trying to smash the foreign policy establishment, diss our intelligence gatherers, operating in a whole new way of an imperial president that we couldn’t have imagined.”

DAN GAINOR: TRUMP DELIVERS STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS — MEDIA JOIN PELOSI IN RIPPING IT UP

All this rhetoric ignores the notion that the House impeachment itself proves he’s not “unchecked.” A Democratic-majority House has been aggressively “checking” him with oversight investigations, in effect trying to do what the Mueller report failed to do: establish that Trump is some sort of autocrat who’s emptying American democracy of all meaning. House impeachment manager Adam Schiff will insert the word “cheat” into every paragraph going forward.

National security equals no questioning of the Bidens. Democracy equals removing an elected president.

This is really going to sound amusing after the Iowa caucuses fiasco. Who looks like they can protect the integrity of our elections now? Who looks competent after the Democratic National Committee touted the “reforms” it has done “to make this the most transparent primary in our history”? Who will trust the outcome, especially after WikiLeaks exposed the DNC’s Bernie-blocking antics in 2016?

CLICK HERE TO GET THE OPINION NEWSLETTER

But that isn’t half as shocking as the really unglued portions of Schiff’s closing argument before the Senate. Desperation overtook reason. If Trump isn’t removed, the congressman from Hollywood feverishly imagined, Trump “could offer Alaska to the Russians in exchange for support in the next election, or decide to move to Mar-a-Lago permanently and let Jared Kushner run the country, delegating to him the decision whether to go to war.”

The networks sidestepped this loopy sound bite. CNN did not convene a large panel discussion on whether Schiff is mentally unstable. The “nonpartisan fact-checkers” didn’t look into Schiff’s paranoid screenplay.

This “unchecked” president has been subjected to almost 1,100 hypernegative minutes — just about impeachment — on the evening news from late September through January, while in the same time frame, the gangbusters economy drew a mere 14 minutes.

This doesn’t count more than 200 hours of soap opera-canceling live impeachment coverage on ABC, CBS and NBC.

It doesn’t count PBS’ broadcasting the impeachment process live and then rerunning it in prime time. It doesn’t hold a candle to cable news’ 24/7 obsession with impeachment.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

The left somehow feels Trump is unaccountable because this tsunami of scandal coverage isn’t damaging his public standing. In fact, Gallup just found that “Trump’s job approval rating has risen to 49 percent, his highest in Gallup polling since he took office in 2017.” Since the start of the year, Trump’s approval is up 6 points among Republicans and 5 points among independents.

This leaves the overall impression that Trump has a very good chance of becoming the first president to be impeached and then reelected. That’s because this impeachment exercise was so transparently one-sided and partisan. And so was the press.

Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org.

Westlake Legal Group image Bozell & Graham: Trump impeachment exercise was one-side and partisan. So was the press Tim Graham fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics fox-news/opinion fox-news/media fnc/opinion fnc Creators Syndicate Brent Bozell article 28424c58-9a4e-5e36-b805-7d7854dfad72   Westlake Legal Group image Bozell & Graham: Trump impeachment exercise was one-side and partisan. So was the press Tim Graham fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics fox-news/opinion fox-news/media fnc/opinion fnc Creators Syndicate Brent Bozell article 28424c58-9a4e-5e36-b805-7d7854dfad72

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Pompeo Spectacularly Self-Owns With Attempted ‘Simpsons’ Troll Of Pelosi

Westlake Legal Group 5e3ab8082700008f0338b454 Pompeo Spectacularly Self-Owns With Attempted ‘Simpsons’ Troll Of Pelosi

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s attempt to troll House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Twitter hilariously backfired on Tuesday.

“Given the context of the episode in question, this is a pretty masterful self-own on the part of Mr. Pompeo,” one person fired back at the secretary of state. Added another: “Dude. You just played yourself. Self owns are the best.”

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Discussion Thread: Senate Impeachment Trial – Day 14: Senator Statements Conclude – Final Vote | 02/05/2020 – Live, 9:30am EST

Today the Senate Impeachment Trial of President Donald Trump concludes. This morning there will be additional time for Senators to make individual statements, followed by a final vote on the Articles of Impeachment at 4pm. The Senate session is scheduled to begin at 9:30am EST.


The Articles of Impeachment brought against President Donald Trump are:


You can watch or listen to the proceedings live, via the links below:

You can also listen online via:


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WATCH LIVE: Trump On Brink Of Acquittal By U.S. Senate

President Trump is expected to be acquitted by the Senate on Wednesday. Alex Brandon/AP hide caption

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Alex Brandon/AP

Senators will close the chapter on President Trump’s Senate trial Wednesday, capping a months-long process that began with an impeachment inquiry in the House of Representatives, led to the president’s impeachment and, ultimately, his likely acquittal.

At 4 p.m. ET, the Senate is set to vote on whether Trump should be convicted or acquitted of charges that he abused power and obstructed Congress. The result was never in doubt. Republicans hold a comfortable majority in the chamber, and Democrats need 67 votes to remove the president from office. Most GOP senators are ardent supporters of the president.

Ahead of the vote, senators have some time to give their own closing statements — up to 10 minutes each. Watch the floor proceedings live beginning at 9:30 a.m. ET.

Trump has called the entire process a “witch hunt” and did not acknowledge it in Tuesday night’s State of the Union address to Congress, a speech where the audience of congressional lawmakers was as divided on the issue of impeachment as the citizens they represent.

At issue is Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukraine’s newly elected president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Democrats say Trump tied the release of frozen military aid to Ukraine to an investigation of Joe Biden, the former vice president who is a Democratic presidential candidate. That forms the basis of the first article of impeachment: abuse of power.

The White House declined to participate in the House impeachment inquiry into whether Trump’s action constituted a quid pro quo — a decision that formed the basis of the second article of impeachment against Trump: obstruction of Congress.

Sen. Susan Collins, the Maine Republican who was seen as a swing vote in the trial, said Tuesday that House managers did not meet the burden of showing the president’s conduct was worth his removal from office. She said that while it was “wrong of [Trump] to ask a foreign government to investigate a political rival,” there were gaps in the record about the phone call.

Collins also criticized the House managers’ rationale on Article 2, obstruction of Congress, saying the Democrats chose “speed over finality”; many Republicans argue that the House Democrats should have gone to court to subpoena Trump administration witnesses for testimony and documents. Rep. Adam Schiff, the lead House manager, has said that legal route would have taken too long.

Trump is expected to be acquitted mostly along party lines — though there are some question marks: It is unclear how Sen. Mitt Romney, the Utah Republican who is a critic of the president, will vote; nor is it certain whether all Democratic senators will vote to convict the president. A small number of red-state Democrats have not said how they will vote, leaving open the prospect of a bipartisan acquittal of the president.

Trump is the third U.S. president to ever be impeached. Like the other two, Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton, he will likely also be acquitted by the Senate.

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John Mellencamp backs Mike Bloomberg, snubs fellow Hoosier Pete Buttigieg

Grammy-award winning singer and songwriter John Mellencamp announced his endorsement of Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg.

The singer, who also co-founded Farm Aid, stars in a TV ad for Bloomberg’s campaign that uses his hit song “Small Town” to highlight the candidate’s approach to revitalizing rural communities in the United States.

“The stakes are too high to not nominate the candidate who will take the fight directly to Trump,” Mellencamp said in a press release obtained by Fox News. “From small towns to big cities, Mike Bloomberg has the experience to represent all Americans. He’s a job creator, philanthropist, and true public servant, and I am confident that as president, he will restore America to a place we can be proud of once again.”

MEG RYAN AND JOHN MELLENCAMP CALL OFF THEIR ENGAGEMENT: REPORTS

Westlake Legal Group MellenCampBloomberg John Mellencamp backs Mike Bloomberg, snubs fellow Hoosier Pete Buttigieg Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/michael-bloomberg fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/genres/political fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 2f15506e-9395-51c4-a3a0-4c227f538902

Singer John Mellencamp has endorsed Mike Bloomberg for president in 2020. (AP)

“John Mellencamp is one of the great voices of the American heartland — and the American experience that binds us together,” Bloomberg added in the release. “His words – from co-founding Farm Aid to fighting hunger and homelessness among veterans – represent America at its best. We had the opportunity to get to know one another through the film, ‘From the Ashes.’ He contributed a powerful song to the soundtrack, and the film raised awareness about the tragic toll that coal mining takes on local communities. He’s an American treasure, and I couldn’t be more honored to accept his support.”

JOHN MELLENCAMP CONCERT INCLUDES ‘TAKE A KNEE’ MOMENT 

The ad, released by the Bloomberg campaign on Tuesday, is even titled “Small Town” and will air across 23 states starting on Feb. 5. In it, Mellencamp sings the chart-topping hit song, which was released in 1985, while a narrator outlines Bloomberg’s plan to help small towns across the country.

“In small-town America, dreams hold fast, but good jobs seem like a thing of the past, and more and more of our kids have to leave in search of opportunity. Making small towns smaller,” the ad states.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Mellencamp, a lifelong Indiana resident, endorsing the former New York City mayor may come as a light blow to the candidacy of fellow Indiana resident Pete Buttigieg. The former mayor of South Bend has been in the 2020 presidential race for longer than Bloomberg and is among the top contenders for the party’s nomination in the general election.

Westlake Legal Group MellenCampBloomberg John Mellencamp backs Mike Bloomberg, snubs fellow Hoosier Pete Buttigieg Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/michael-bloomberg fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/genres/political fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 2f15506e-9395-51c4-a3a0-4c227f538902   Westlake Legal Group MellenCampBloomberg John Mellencamp backs Mike Bloomberg, snubs fellow Hoosier Pete Buttigieg Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/michael-bloomberg fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/genres/political fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 2f15506e-9395-51c4-a3a0-4c227f538902

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Jason Chaffetz: Trump’s State of the Union ‘by far’ better than any of Barack Obama’s

Westlake Legal Group JASON-C Jason Chaffetz: Trump's State of the Union 'by far' better than any of Barack Obama's Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/immigration/illegal-immigrants fox-news/us/economy/taxes fox-news/us/economy fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/socialism fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/law fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/campaigning/trump-2020-campaign fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/state-of-the-union fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc ff8a2f3d-8e10-5195-a482-bbaf3e0412d1 article

President Trump’s State of the Union address on Tuesday evening was better than any of the ones delivered by former President Barack Obama, Fox News contributor and former congressman Jason Chaffetz said Wednesday.

Appearing on “Fox & Friends” with hosts Steve Doocy, Ainsley Earhardt and Brian Kilmeade, Chaffetz said that after sitting through 12 speeches during his tenure, this was “by far the best speech” he has heard.

“I thought it was clear, it was visionary, and it was emotional,” he noted. “And, I just — I can’t tell you how good it was.”

“And I sat through all the Obama speeches and they talk about what a great orator he was,” he told the “Friends” hosts. “This was, by far, a better speech.”

TRUMP TAKES ON ‘RADICAL LEFT’ IN DEFIANT AND DRAMATIC STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS; PELOSI RIPS UP SPEECH

During his third State of the Union address, the president attacked socialism and left-wing policies, eliciting disgusted reactions from Democrats in attendance and prompting a furious House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to rip up her copy of Trump’s speech as soon as it concluded.

Despite Democrats’ outrage and other dramatic “made-for-TV moments,” Trump also began to form what could be part of his reelection campaign message.

“As we work to improve Americans’ health care, there are those who want to take away your health care, take away your doctor, and abolish private insurance entirely,” the president remarked. “One hundred thirty-two lawmakers in this room have endorsed legislation to impose a socialist takeover of our health care system, wiping out the private health insurance plans of 180 million Americans. To those watching at home tonight, I want you to know: We will never let socialism destroy American health care.”

“This is what is happening in California and other states — their systems are totally out of control, costing taxpayers vast and unaffordable amounts of money,” Trump later added. “If forcing American taxpayers to provide unlimited free health care to illegal aliens sounds fair to you, then stand with the radical left.  But if you believe that we should defend American patients and American seniors, then stand with me and pass legislation to prohibit free government health care for illegal aliens!”

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President Trump also took aim at some economic and foreign policies from the previous administration, telling the nation if they had failed to reverse them “the world would not now be witness to America’s great economic success.”

The address came one day before the Senate was slated to deliver its verdict in the impeachment trial that has divided the nation. Trump, who is widely expected to be acquitted, did not mention the proceedings directly in his speech.

Fox News’ Gregg Re, Chad Pergram, Jason Donner, Marisa Schultz, and Matt Leach contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group JASON-C Jason Chaffetz: Trump's State of the Union 'by far' better than any of Barack Obama's Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/immigration/illegal-immigrants fox-news/us/economy/taxes fox-news/us/economy fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/socialism fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/law fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/campaigning/trump-2020-campaign fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/state-of-the-union fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc ff8a2f3d-8e10-5195-a482-bbaf3e0412d1 article   Westlake Legal Group JASON-C Jason Chaffetz: Trump's State of the Union 'by far' better than any of Barack Obama's Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/immigration/illegal-immigrants fox-news/us/economy/taxes fox-news/us/economy fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/socialism fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/politics/foreign-policy fox-news/politics/executive/law fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/campaigning/trump-2020-campaign fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/news-events/state-of-the-union fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc ff8a2f3d-8e10-5195-a482-bbaf3e0412d1 article

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Parkland father interrupts Trump’s speech, is removed from House gallery

The father of a Parkland shooting victim was removed from the House chamber gallery Tuesday night for shouting about gun control during President Trump’s State of the Union address.

Gun control activist Fred Guttenberg briefly interrupted the president after Trump vowed to “always protect your Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms,” as long as he is in the White House. The moment was not visible on the television broadcast of the event, though viewers could hear a man shouting before both Vice President Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appear to glance up at the gallery for a moment.

Westlake Legal Group Jaime-Guttenberg Parkland father interrupts Trump's speech, is removed from House gallery Tyler Olson fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/us fox-news/politics fox news fnc/us fnc article 53a4d1fb-e0b3-5ce2-a710-d03e062eec34

Fred Guttenberg, father of Parkland school shooting victim Jaime Guttenberg, is ejected after shouting during President Trump’s State of the Union address to a joint session of the U.S. Congress in the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, on Feb. 4, 2020. REUTERS/Tom Brenner 

PARKLAND’S MARJORY STONEMAN DOUGLAS FOOTBALL TEAM TAKES PART IN SUPER BOWL LIV REHEARSAL

Guttenberg was one of Pelosi’s guests for the State of the Union. She seemed to make “calm down” gestures with her hands while saying something to herself as she peered up into the gallery after the moment.

Guttenberg’s daughter Jaime was one of 16 children murdered in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., in 2018. She was 14 years old.

Guttenberg has become something of an advocate against gun violence in recent years and is a regular on Capitol Hill. His organization, called Orange Ribbons for Jamie, is dedicated to “supporting programs that were important to her, as well as those dedicated to pursuing common sense gun safety reforms.”

STATE OF THE UNION: THESE NOTABLE GUESTS HAVE BEEN INVITED BY LAWMAKERS

Guttenberg apologized after the speech.

“Tonight was a rough night,” he tweeted. “I disrupted the State of the Union and was detained because I let my emotions get the best of me. I simply want to be able to deal with the reality of gun violence and not have to listen to the lies about the 2A as happened tonight.

“That said, I should not have yelled out. I am thankful for the overwhelming support that I am receiving. However, I do owe my family and friends an apology. I have tried to conduct myself with dignity throughout this process and I will do better as I pursue gun safety.”

This was not the first viral moment Guttenberg had in the nation’s capitol. He attended the confirmation hearings for Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was also at Trump’s address Tuesday, and attempted to shake the then-judge’s hand. On a day that his confirmation hearing had been interrupted several times by protesters, Kavanaugh did not recognize Guttenberg and seemed to ignore the handshake.

White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah later disputed that characterization, noting that security also did not recognize Guttenberg and promptly stepped between the two men.

“As Judge Kavanaugh left for his lunch break, an unidentified individual approached him. Before the Judge was able to shake his hand, security had intervened,” Shah wrote on Twitter.

‘Tonight he stood up to a president that believes peace and the second amendment are mutually exclusive and was removed’

— David Hogg

Guttenberg disagreed with Shah’s account, noting that he had been in the hearing room the entire day and was introduced by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.

Many spoke out in defense of Guttenberg’s comments on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, despite his apology. David Hogg, who attended the same school as Guttenberg’s daughter, took to Twitter to join the hashtag “#ImWithFred.”

“[Guttenberg] lost his daughter in the Parkland shooting and has worked every day since to end gun violence,” Hogg said. “Tonight he stood up to a president that believes peace and the Second Amendment are mutually exclusive and was removed.”

Others who joined in on the “#ImWithFred” hashtag included Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Mass., Democratic National Committee Lawyers Council Chair Andrew Weinstein, filmmaker Morgan J. Freeman, Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., and others.

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Guttenberg also tweeted about gun violence earlier in the day, unloading on Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., in response to the senator tweeting a Bible verse.

“On the day of my distress I call to you, for [sic] you will answer me,” Rubio tweeted.

“[Rubio], are you calling to me? I will answer,” Guttenberg posted. “You are still pathetically weak. We are 10 days from the two-year mark of my daughter’s murder. You have still done nothing about gun violence. As you are choosing to be irrelevant, please remove yourself from the Senate.”

Fox News’ Jennifer Earl contributed to this report. 

Westlake Legal Group Jaime-Guttenberg Parkland father interrupts Trump's speech, is removed from House gallery Tyler Olson fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/us fox-news/politics fox news fnc/us fnc article 53a4d1fb-e0b3-5ce2-a710-d03e062eec34   Westlake Legal Group Jaime-Guttenberg Parkland father interrupts Trump's speech, is removed from House gallery Tyler Olson fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/us fox-news/politics fox news fnc/us fnc article 53a4d1fb-e0b3-5ce2-a710-d03e062eec34

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