President Donald Trump said in his first State of the Union address Tuesday that “a new tide of optimism was already sweeping across our land.”

Calling the state of the nation “strong because our people are strong,” Trump ticked off a list of what he said were major accomplishments, such as tax cuts.

The president also looked ahead to an overhaul of the nation’s “crumbling” infrastructure and enacting immigration reform and strengthening border security.

Not unexpectedly, Republicans in Hawaii gave high marks to the president’s address while members of Hawaii’s congressional delegation — Democrats all — mostly panned the big speech.

President Donald Trump pauses as he gives his first State of the Union address in the House chamber of the U.S. Capitol to a joint session of Congress Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018 in Washington, as Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Paul Ryan applaud. (Win McNamee/Pool via AP)
President Donald Trump pauses as he gives his first State of the Union address Tuesday. Behind him are Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan. AP

“Tonight, the president highlighted his hugely successful first year in office and his unwavering commitment to empowering the American People, strengthening the American economy and keeping American communities safe,” the Republican Party of Hawaii said in a statement. “From tax reform, to rebuilding our military to defeating terrorism around the globe, President Trump has shown time and again that he is a man of his word.”

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa, however, described the president as a phony salesman.

“True to Trump, he claimed credit for everything good that is happening in America, but listen carefully to what it is that he is selling,” she said in a statement. “We do not have the money to pay for the things he proposed. Congress still does not understand how we are paying for the tax cuts the Republicans passed last fall that are projected to increase deficits by an estimated $1.46 trillion over the next decade. For example, we are allegedly set to launch a massive infrastructure improvement campaign?”

‘Extraordinary Success’

Speaking for nearly 90 minutes, Trump praised the embrace of “beautiful, clean coal” for energy, cheered the elimination of the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act and said the economy and businesses are booming.

“Over the last year, we have made incredible progress and achieved extraordinary success,” he said. “We have faced challenges we expected, and others we could never have imagined. We have shared in the heights of victory and the pains of hardship. We endured floods and fires and storms. But through it all, we have seen the beauty of America’s soul, and the steel in America’s spine.”

“I listened carefully to the president’s speech for opportunities for bipartisanship, and I was disappointed to find so few.” — Sen. Brian Schatz

Trump also called for a attention to the country’s infrastructure, especially in transportation, and the enactment of immigration policies “that focus on the best interests of American workers and American families.”

The full address can be read below.

The statement from the Hawaii GOP stressed the importance of bipartisanship: “We call upon all members of Congress, regardless of party, to unite behind our president’s vision of a safe, strong and proud America. Together, we truly can make America great again.”

Andria Tupola, the top Republican in the Hawaii House of Representatives, was pleased that Trump pointed out a number of federal policies that Hawaii can mirror at the state level.

“The Hawaii workforce is already beginning to benefit from federal tax cuts,” Tupola said in a statement. “I look forward to tax reform on the local and state level in order to give more money back to the people.”

Standing Up To Kim Jong Un

Tupola said she appreciated the president recognizing people in the House chamber who had suffered hardship. She also credited Trump with speaking out forcefully on North Korea.

“In light of (the) false missile alert, it is comforting to know that our president is committed to a strong defense of our country,” she said.

Top Hawaii Democrats interpreted the State of the Union differently.

The Hawaii workforce is already beginning to benefit from federal tax cuts.” — Rep. Andria Tupola

“I listened carefully to the president’s speech for opportunities for bipartisanship, and I was disappointed to find so few,” said U.S. Sen Brian Schatz in a statement. “Although there may be a chance for compromise on infrastructure and a solution for the Dreamers worked out in the Senate, much of the speech was disappointingly divisive.”

U.S. Mazie Hirono also complained about what she says are the president’s tendencies to “pit one group against another and attacking the people who don’t agree with him.”

She continued:

“In his performance tonight, the president tried to show something different and failed. Nothing the president has done in the past year has demonstrated he’s serious about bringing our country together to get things done.”

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard struck a more conciliatory tone and seemed to agree with some of the president’s concerns.

“People in Hawaii and across the country are sick and tired of partisan politics and gridlock in Washington,” Gabbard said in a statement. “Rather than pour fuel on the fire of divisiveness and hatred, we must come together in the spirit of aloha and work toward bipartisan solutions for the many challenges that face us today — crumbling infrastructure, lack of affordable housing, a broken healthcare and immigration system, the need for criminal justice reform, and so much more.”

Hanabusa, however, said that Trump “is always willing to employ divisive, discriminatory rhetoric and fake facts to justify his message. He can clap for himself all he wants but this speech was heavy on old Trump talking points but offered little in the way of innovative thinking about the real issues facing our nation. Americans deserve better.”

Tweets from Hawaii’s delegates during and after the president’s speech:

Read the State Of The Union Address:

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