The United States President, Barack Obama, has vigorously defended his legacy while striking an optimistic note for America's future in his final State of the Union address.

"Republicans will disagree with the president that our enemies are not getting stronger and will likely quickly cite Iran has 10 American sailors in its possession at this very moment", said Republican consultant Ron Bonjean.

Despite that Haley, a daughter of Indian immigrants, didn't hold back on Obama either, criticizing the Democratic president's record on healthcare and national security.

He deplored "voices urging us to fall back into tribes to scapegoat fellow citizens who don't look like us or pray like us" - and others who want to "carpet-bomb civilians" - references to belligerent Republican campaign rhetoric. South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (R) seconded, saying to resist "the siren call of the angriest voices". Say a hardworking American loses his job - we shouldn't just make sure that he can get unemployment insurance; we should make sure that program encourages him to retrain for a business that's ready to hire him. And so, I applaud the president for actually taking that step.

"Nearly 18 million have gained coverage so far". That didn't stop most candidates from tweeting through the duration of the speech.

Over the last seven years of President Barack Obama's presidency the State of the Union addresses have been nothing short of poetic.

Obama pitched the removal of legislatures from redistricting; a reduction of the influence of money in politics; and laws that make it easier to vote. Republicans from the House and Senate went to Baltimore for a retreat to plan the year. His optimism was meant to draw a contrast with what the White House sees as doom-and-gloom scenarios peddled by the GOP.

His remarks drew attention to issues that have defined the 2016 presidential campaign, including Donald Trump's proposed bans on Mexican immigrants and Muslim tourists. The president and his aides have been marveling for months at what they described as Republicans' gloom-and-doom vision.

But Obama did offer some proposals, confronting a Congress largely hostile to his agenda by mentioning initiatives that are dead on arrival, including immigration reform and closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

While at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, the DC rapper made history as the first rapper to open up a State of the Union Address.

Rep. Susan Davis said the President's speech appealed to America's "better angels" and harnessed the American spirit.


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