05:47 GMT05 August 2020
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    US President Donald Trump accepted Monday House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s invitation to deliver the State of the Union address before the US Congress on 5 February, as the US government has re-opened, for now, following the 35-day shutdown.

    Plans for the speech slated for 29 January fell apart during the partial shutdown of the federal government when Pelosi first suggested that Trump delay the speech and later disinvited the US president from the House Chamber.

    The stalemate began on 22 December after Democrats refused to meet Trump's demand for $5.7 billion in funds to build a wall along the southern US border with Mexico. Neither Trump nor his opponents in Congress reportedly appear ready to yield ground to end the dispute.

    Trump hinted Friday there was a "good chance" he would declare a national emergency regarding the situation at the US border with Mexico.

    READ MORE: Senators Say Recent Government Shutdown Affected US Cybersecurity – Letter

    “I am certainly thinking about it. I think there’s a good chance we’ll have to do that", Trump told reporters at the White House. However, the US president declined to reveal whether he plans to declare a national emergency during his State of the Union speech next Tuesday.

    According to an excerpt of the address released by the White House on Friday, cited by Reuters, Trump will say to a divided US Congress on Tuesday that Republicans and Democrats can "break decades of political stalemate".

    "Together we can break decades of political stalemate, we can bridge old divisions, heal old wounds, build new coalitions, forge new solutions and unlock the extraordinary promise of America’s future. The decision is ours to make", Trump will say, Reuters reported.

    Moreover, Trump will call on Congress to send him legislation to fund infrastructure projects and update lawmakers on China trade talks, as well as urge them to approve his trade pact with Canada and Mexico that would replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a senior administration official said Friday, according to Reuters.

    READ MORE: White House Preparing Draft National Emergency Order Amid Shutdown – Reports

    Meanwhile, the US president told reporters Friday at the White House, "I am saying listen closely to the State of the Union [speech]. I think you'll find it very exciting".

    Last year, in his first State of the Union address, Trump said that the United States must modernize its nuclear arsenal and take a stronger stance against rivals like China and Russia, and he announced that he had signed an order to keep the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention center open.


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