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What both sides of the aisle heard in Trump's speech

• Jan 31, 2017 at 5:00 PM

As you might expect, Republicans and Democrats heard vastly different things from President Donald Trump at the inauguration.

Katie Bo Williams, a blogger for The Hill, points out that “Democrats condemned the address as a dark vision of an America that doesn’t exist — an at-times combative diatribe that left the millions of voters who cast their ballot for Hillary Clinton standing on the sidelines.”

“I was hoping for a little more uplifting vision,” a downcast U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) said. Asked what she thought of the speech, U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel (D-Fla.) heaved a heavy sigh and said it didn’t line up with her views, Williams notes.

Williams says “Republicans saw the speech as a clear signal that Trump intends to put the interests of the American people first — a return to a philosophy of American exceptionalism that many Republicans believe was lost under his predecessor.”

“I thought it was a good strong message on what he wants to accomplish for the American people,” U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) said. “Basically the message that he wants them at the center of their government. I think it touched all of the right themes.”

But both Republicans and Democrats saw the speech as a continuation of Trump’s brawling, no-holds-barred campaign.

“Generally, I thought the theme was consistent with the campaign he ran,” said Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Trump’s one-time opponent in the Republican presidential primary.

West Michigan’s congressman said Trump and Democrats will have to make more of an effort to bridge the gaping divide.

“The sign of a true leader, I think, is not to walk away from your convictions or your beliefs, but how do you make sure that you as best as possible try to heal divisions,” said U.S. Rep. Huizenga, R-Zeeland. “I think he would be well served to do that and to reach out.”

Read William’s complete blog post for The Hill: “GOP, Dems hear different things from Trump.”

The opinions expressed by bloggers are not necessarily shared by the Grand Haven Tribune or its employees. They are the sole opinion of the bloggers, who are not employed by or compensated by the Tribune.

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