Transcript for Final preparations underway for Trump's State of the Union address
This as he prepares to deliver his state of the union address. His first time to a house chamber controlled by Democrats. Our chief white house correspondent Jon Karl, Mary Bruce covering it from both ends. Aides say he's been work on a message of unity? Reporter: Yes, they say the big theme will be unity. The president coming after this brutal government shutdown really couldn't imagine a worse start the president has had with the new democratic congress shutting it down over the wall but he will talk about areas that he can work with Democrats and he's going to remind them of one major bipartisan accomplishment he had last year on prison reform. Areas he can work with Democrats include dealing with prescription drugs, the prices of prescription drug answer also the question of infrastructure spending, so, yes, the theme will be unity. Mary, we'll be able to see Nancy Pelosi's reaction in realtime over the president's shoulder. Reporter: The power struggle between these two on full display. Everyone watching her image after the president's shoulder throughout the speech. This is a very different crowd for the president, for the first time speaking before a divided congress and a sea of opponents. While you're still likely to see applause the president should face a fair amount of stoney silence speaking to several democratic members who have already announced they're looking to replace him in 2020 as well as a new generation of Democrats. Closely watching to see how the new rising stars are reacting to their first state of the union as well. Jon, one big question how he deals with the shutdown and the border wall and maybe declaring a national emergency to keep the government open. Reporter: Yeah, now, with a big caveat here, George, that the speech is still being edited and nobody knows what the president will say until he comes out there. What I'm told the president will make it clear that he does not intend to shut down the government, again, and I am told that he is not going to declare a national emergency. Again, you don't really know what he does until he steps to the podium but they say the theme here will be unity, not government shutdown, not bypassing congress with a national emergency. Mary, Democrats making an unusual choice for their response. The failed senate candidate down in G., Stacey Abrams. Reporter: Stacey Abrams down in Georgia will be delivering the democratic response. A pretty high-profile opportunity for someone who just lost in the midterms but she is known as a fierce advocate for voting rights and many are encouraging her to run again possibly even for senate then, of course, you have all of the Democrats who will invite guests to help underscore their agenda and position and many have invited immigrants, many survivors of gun violence and victims and then you have Alexandria ocasio-cortez, one of the prominent rising stars in the democratic party who invited one of those protesters, one of the survivors of sexual assault who had that encounter with senator flake around supreme court Kavanaugh's nomination. I'll be on it tonight. The latest on Ralph Northam
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.