Kellyanne Conway: Trump will call for comity, end to politics of ‘resistance’
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway says President Trump will use his State of the Union Address Tuesday to urge Americans to come together and reject the politics of “resistance,” saying the impact of his policies is what matters.
“The American people see the results,” she told reporters at the White House. “You can’t argue with the economic numbers.”
She said the president will point out examples where he’s brought people together and forged compromise, despite the naysayers.
“This president is going to call for an end to the politics of resistance, retribution and call for more comity,” she said.
Ms. Conway did not say whether Mr. Trump will use his speech to declare an emergency to begin construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
The president in recent days hinted he would use the occasion to signal his intentions, as House Democrats reject his call for wall funding as part of border-security negotiations to avoid a government shutdown after Feb. 15.
Ms. Conway argued the president can make a convincing call for unity despite the ill feelings around the most recent shutdown, which was fueled by Mr. Trump’s demands and lasted 35 days.
“The two are not the same,” she said. “He believes we have a crisis at the southern border.”
She also waved off reported concerns among GOP leaders, who say declaring a national emergency for the wall could set a poor precedent and open Pandora’s Box for a future Democratic president.
Mr. Trump, she said, is mostly concerned about human trafficking and drug smuggling along the border.
“He has the absolute right to declare a national emergency,” Ms. Conway said, arguing Congress has “failed to do its job.”
Ms. Conway also defended the president’s work ethic after the massive leak of his presidential schedules to the Axios news outlet.
The schedules show the president spends an average of 60 percent of each day in unstructured “executive time,” primarily in the White House residence in the morning before he arrives in the West Wing, according to the Axios report.
The report said Mr. Trump spends much of that time watching TV, tweeting and talking on the phone.
Ms. Conway said the leaked calendars didn’t provide a full picture of Mr. Trump’s more detailed schedule.
“He’s a very active president the results speak for themselves,” she said.