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Trump's first address to Congress: New chapter of American greatness
08:38, 1 March 2017
Trump's first address to Congress: New chapter of American greatness

"We are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its very ugly forms," US President said

08:38, 1 March 2017

Reuters

The Republican US President Donald Trump spoke of a "new chapter of American greatness" in his first address to the Congress. His primetime address sought to bolster his low approval ratings after a bumpy start to his fledgling presidency. This was reported by BBC agency

At the outset of Tuesday night's hour-long speech, Mr Trump tackled recent suspected hate crimes, saying "we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its very ugly forms".

On immigration, he dangled the intriguing possibility of a major policy shift towards a goal that eluded his two predecessors, insisting that "real and positive" reform was possible. That line came hours after he told news anchors off the record at a White House lunch that he might be open to granting legal status to undocumented immigrants.

In his address to US lawmakers, the president also talked tough on the issue, pledging to make US communities safer "by finally enforcing our immigration laws".

Related: Russia looks for good signs from Trump in his speech to Congress

Mr Trump said the US "strongly supports Nato", but members of the alliance "must meet their financial obligations".

He outlined a blueprint for an Obamacare replacement that included ensuring access to coverage for those with pre-existing conditions.

The president drew loud applause when he railed against the so-called Islamic State and promised to "extinguish this vile enemy from our planet".

Despite the president's appeal for both parties to "unite for the good of our country", Democratic lawmakers mostly sat in silence or openly laughed at parts of the speech. Trump's feel-good exhortation for national unity, some noted, was in stark contrast to his doom-laden inauguration speech of a month ago.

Trump's popularity has hit a historic low for modern presidents after a month in office - just 44% of Americans think he is doing a good job, according to RealClearPolitics.

Earlier it was reported that Trump will increase defense expenses, cutting from medicine, ecology. US President might include such propositions in budget of the next fiscal year.

Related: Trump wants to increase US nuclear arsenal

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