How are people who voted for President Trump reacting to his first State of the Union address?
Here & Now's Robin Young hears from Kim Dowdle (@kimfucious10) of Birmingham, Alabama, co-founder of Republicans For Doug Jones, and Ben Clymer Jr., president of the Lincoln Club of Riverside County, California.
On their reaction to President Trump's address
Kim Dowdle: "Overall, I was pleased. I was very pleased that he controlled himself.
"I mean, let's be honest: We all voted for him because he wasn't a politician. And I do enjoy his opinions, find them comical at times. But there are times where he just needs to stop."
Ben Clymer Jr.: "Overall, I would grade him an 'A.' There are some things I obviously disagree with as far as being very militaristic in foreign intervention, I'd like to see more of his platform as far as the nonintervention. But overall, I really like the fact that he touched on what after all is our motto, 'In God we trust,' in faith and family, not in government, being the center of the American life."
"As the president alluded to last night, American citizens, we have dreams, too."Ben Clymer Jr.
On Trump's remarks on immigration
BC: "One thing that in particular was very unifying was when he talked about his four-point plan for immigration. He specifically mentioned it wasn't something that individuals were going to get 100 percent of what they wanted, but that everyone would get something, and it was compromise.
"As the president alluded to last night, American citizens, we have dreams, too. And what we see, my wife and I both, it's a blatant disrespect and a slap in the face to those individuals who took the time to come here legally to let these other individuals come and cut in front of the line, so to speak."
KD: "I mean there's so much that goes in with immigration. I just wanna see America create an honest path for those who truly wanna become citizens. I'm not talking about those who are here and don't pay taxes. I'm talking about my sister-in-law, who came here as a young child, and her family worked hard and was diligent. She's a nurse, she went through our universities and she's good at what she does. She pays taxes, she has five beautiful children with my brother. She's not going anywhere. Her family is all over here now. Those are the people that I wanna see have a definite pathway. And he did say 12 years [for DACA recipients to become U.S. citizens] last night, which I was proud to hear at least some date. That's ridiculous, in my opinion, 12 years. But it's a start."
On questionable moments from the address
KD: "There weren't any wince moments, with the exception [of], he spoke about prison reform, and I liked what he said. But what I didn't like was how he said that he wants to reform our prisoners, to help inmates who have served their time to get a second chance at life. And I give him accolades for that. But how?
"Our prison system is so broken, and we put these people in jail, and you can change, everyone can change. But if you've got someone in prison who is really earnest in their desire to change, then all we do when we release them is just give them a little bit of money and say, 'Good luck.' "
"I just wanna see America create an honest path for those who truly wanna become citizens. I'm not talking about those who are here and don't pay taxes."Kim Dowdle, on Trump's remarks on immigration in his State of the Union address
On positives from Trump's remarks on business and the economy
BC: "Seeing that companies are reinvesting in America. During the campaign, the rhetoric we heard from the Democratic side, was that bolstering manufacturing jobs would be impossible in the United States. And now seeing that manufacturing is reramping up, [it's] extremely encouraging. Unemployment, the lowest it's been in over four decades, that's extremely encouraging."
Dowdle, who is a rape survivor, on women who have accused Trump of sexual misconduct
KD: "You know, here's what I'd like to see him do — and if he would just do this, how much more revered he would be. And I don't think he understands that, actually. Perhaps he just needs to hear that, that we as Americans would revere him for his faults as well as his strengths, you know? I would love for him to actually say, 'I did this. I passed it off as locker room talk, it made me nervous, I didn't know what to say, I didn't expect it to be taped, I felt violated because it was taped and because I felt violated that it was taped, now I understand a wee bit of just how much they must have felt violated that I did those deplorable actions to them.' Do I believe them? You bet I do."
This article was originally published on January 31, 2018.
This segment aired on January 31, 2018.