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Biden Focuses On Issues Americans Care Least About In Biggest Speech Of Presidency

President Joe Biden has set aside immigration, inflation and crime to lead his 2024 State of the Union address with three issues that barely register in the polls of Americans.

Biden spent the first 10 minutes of his 2024 State of the Union address discussing the Ukraine war and the January 6 Capitol riot before moving on to discuss the coronavirus pandemic. At least an hour after he was scheduled to take the stage, the president finally addressed concerns about his age, the crisis at the southern border, and the growing calls for the name of Laken Riley, the 22-year-old Georgia man who was allegedly killed. I responded. by illegal immigrants. (Related: Chaos erupts outside the White House and Capitol just before SOTU)

“If anyone in this room thinks President Putin is going to stop by Ukraine, I can assure you he won’t,” the 81-year-old began. “But if we support Ukraine and give it the weapons it needs to defend itself, Ukraine will be able to stop Putin. That's all Ukraine wants. They want American soldiers. It’s not like I’m there.”

“In fact, there are no American soldiers at war in Ukraine. And I am determined to keep it that way. But now aid to Ukraine is being blocked by those who want us to leave world leadership.” “It has been,” he continued.

After emphasizing his message to Putin and appealing for more support for Ukraine, Biden turned to another topic that took place nearly three and a half years ago: the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. The president never called former President Donald Trump by name, but rather referred to him as his predecessor.

“The lies about January 6th and the 2020 election, and the conspiracy to steal it, pose the most serious threat to our democracy since the Civil War,” Biden said. “But they failed. America stood strong and democracy prevailed. But we can be honest: the threat still exists and democracy must be protected.”

“My predecessor and some of you here are trying to bury the truth of January 6th. I will not do that,” Biden continued.

Biden has positioned the recovery from the 2020 coronavirus pandemic as a story of America's comeback.

“Resurrecting America means building a future of American potential, building an economy from the middle out and the bottom up rather than the top down, investing in all Americans, all Americans, and making sure everyone has equity.” “It's about making sure that no one is left behind,” Biden said.

“The pandemic no longer rules our lives. The vaccines that saved us from coronavirus are now being used to defeat cancer,” he continued.

While Biden and his advisers saw Ukraine, COVID-19 and the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill as perfect topics to open the speech, Americans are also interested in other topics. Immigration is now a top concern for Americans, with 28% citing it as their top priority, according to a February Gallup poll. 20% of American voters said “government” was their top priority, while 12% said “the economy in general.”

Only 9% of Americans called Trump a “threat to democracy,” a common refrain used by Biden and his allies as a top priority in characterizing Trump and his administration. according to Back to January's Data for Progress survey.

Just 3% of American voters said foreign aid and overseas issues are a priority for them, which is exactly the theme Biden chose to open his State of the Union address.

These issues, which Americans consider top concerns, came up late in Biden's speech, about 30 minutes into the speech. When discussing the border crisis, the president repeatedly called on Congress to pass additional funding legislation that would provide aid to both Ukraine and Israel, as well as funding to stem the border crisis. Most notably, Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene confronted the president, yelling at him during his speech and imploring him to say Riley's name.

Biden tried to do so, but got Riley's first name wrong and called her “Lincoln” instead.

“Lincoln. Lincoln Riley,” Biden said, holding up a pin with the late woman's name on it. “An innocent young woman was killed by an illegal alien. That's right.”

This gaffe was the only major blunder for Biden, who saved the final moments of his speech to address another key concern for voters: age.

“Now, some people my age see a different story. A story of American resentment, revenge, and retaliation. That's not me,” Biden said, adding that his age continued to promote the experience it had given him.

Biden's suitability for the presidency remains a key concern ahead of his speech. A Feb. 6 NBC poll found that at least 66% of U.S. voters are concerned about Biden's age and health ahead of the 2024 election. But concerns about Biden's health really escalated after Special Counsel Robert Hur's report last month on the president's handling of classified documents. During a five-hour interview with the special counsel, Mr. It pointed out.

The State of the Union speech highlighted the president's energy, and his re-election campaign reportedly plans to use the moment as a reset while trailing in the polls. In preparation, Biden reportedly spent ample time fine-tuning his speech and conducting physical exams. Regardless of the preparatory work, some Democrats and allies remained concerned about the possibility of a gaffe.

“If I was smart, I'd go home right now,” Biden said from the stage.

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