Donald Trump is hinting that he may drop a couple of “bombshell” statements during Tuesday’s scheduled State of the Union address, This Is Insider is reporting. Possibilities include an announcement that he’s going to declare a national emergency over border wall funding, and/or a second summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.
The Much-Delayed SotU
That Trump is even giving a State of the Union address at all, at least at this time, is something of a victory for the president. The Constitution mandates that the president brief Congress “from time to time,” and traditionally, that’s taken the form of the once-yearly State of the Union address, which typically happens in late January.
However, during the 2018-2019 government shutdown, Trump and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi failed to see eye-to-eye on the wisdom of giving the speech at a time when government workers were working without pay, and the Capitol Police force was understaffed. After various offers of alternatives for giving the speech or delaying it, the government temporarily reopened, and Trump is scheduled to give the speech on Tuesday.
Emergency Border Wall Funding?
One suggestion, made as recently as Friday, is that Trump may use the occasion to declare a national state of emergency in order to secure funding for his border wall.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 3, 2019
When asked directly about it on Friday, Trump simply told reporters to “listen closely” to Tuesday’s address.
“I think there’s a good chance that we’ll have to do that. But we will at the same time be building, regardless, we’re building a wall. And we’re building a lot of wall. But I can do it a lot faster the other way.”
A Second Summit With Kim Jong-Un
Speaking on Sunday to CBS News, Trump said that a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was “set,” although this time he declined to give further details or to directly or indirectly suggest that an announcement about the summit would be coming via the State of the Union address.
Trump and Kim met face-to-face in June 2018 in Singapore, a historic, first-ever visit between a sitting U.S. president and a North Korean leader. At the time, Trump touted the progress made by the meeting, leaving Singapore with a pledge that the North would end its nuclear capabilities.
However, in the months since, the belief in the intelligence community – and specifically, as iterated by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats – is that Kim has not made any moves towards denuclearization, and is, in fact, continuing with his nuclear ambitions.
Trump says he believes that a second summit will produce a deal.