As we said, we are here in a very cold Washington, D.C., tonight, for the president's state of the union address. He's about to announce ideas for his final three years. So, is he fed up with... See More
As we said, we are here in a very cold Washington, D.C., tonight, for the president's state of the union address. He's about to announce ideas for his final three years. So, is he fed up with congress? Will he go it alone? Here's ABC's chief white house correspondent, Jonathan Karl. Reporter: Taking a quick break from speech prep, president Obama got a taste of the frigid Washington weather. Good thing the speech is inside. Reporter: It's not just the weather that is cold. Obama has the lowest approval rating of any president after five years in office. The white house sees tonight's speech as a chance to get back on track. Over the past week, the white one of the big themes, the president doesn't need congress to get things done. It's always better when there's bipartisan approval in congress. Reporter: Case in point, a push to connect 15,000 public schools, using private funds and money congress has appropriated. The president will promise executive action to require higher fuel standards for trucks. And to raise the minimum wage for those working on future federal contracts. But a warning from republican speaker of the house John Boehner, who told reporters today, if the president tries to ignore congress, he's going to run into a brick wall. We're not going to sit here and let the president trample over us. The president also hopes to inspire tonight. He and the first lady have invited some genuine American heroes. Boston bombing victim, Jeff Bauman. And Carlos Arredondo, who helped save his life. Boston strong personified. And Antoinette tuff, the bookkeeper who prevented a potential elementary school massacre by talking a would-be shooter into surrendering. The white house has just released a few excerpts of the president's speech. And in these, you see a real note of determination and defiance. One excerpt saying, America does not stand still. And neither will I. So, wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that's what I'm going to do. That, a message, obviously, Diane, right to republicans, who have successfully blocked almost everything he's wanted to get past over the past three years. And we'll be watching what happens when he says that tonight. Thank you, Jon. We turn, now, to co-anchor of "Good morning America," George stephanopoulos. George, what's the big picture for everyone at home tonight? The president is coming into the speech with the best economy of his presidency, far and away. And the worst politics of his presidency. But it's about as low as it can be coming into this speech. Congress, as Jon pointed out, is against what he's doing. And the country has given up on all of them. They're fed up with everybody in Washington. He has to do one thing tonight, convince the country that he can actually get something done. And that's why he's showing the determination Jon talked about. We've been looking at the pictures over the years. All of the years he's been giving state of the union speeches. As you look at him and think about him, where do you think he is personally tonight walking into that room? A little more gray. And he's been a measure-tempered guy. But you have more of that than ever before. He comes into the speech of what he's done, with what he can do and what he cannot do. We're going to be watching together tonight. George and I will be right here covering it all with our powerhouse political team. The president's state of the union Saturday beginning at 9:00 P.M. Eastern.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.