Transcript for State of the Union: What can we expect?
This state of the union day weren't nation did I think they want the same things a lot of the time they just don't sit down and work it out. Kennedy to fix it right now I want to know exactly what he's going to discuss today the White House says president trump plans a message. Of unity and he's calling for cooperation. And also compromised knowing this presidency will rely on distortions and made up facts. How will trump be received by the new democratic house majority of the most diverse congress in history making it they should listen to that message not only just look at the messenger. All this played out as federal prosecutors investigate trumps inauguration. And as a national debate rages about race and racism in our politics the fate of Virginia's embattled democratic governor. Those stories and more right now in the briefing her yeah. Hey everybody thanks for joining us hear the briefing Herman it's a big day up on Capitol Hill. Second state of the union for president drop Mary Alice and. You can feel the excitement up your particularly among the freshmen members. Lot of gas a lot of family members here in town for this big day give us three things that you are sort of watching for tonight. And this big moment there's been so much political drama getting here today the speech delayed by a week. But this is a big moment for president trump unfiltered today a national audience. What are you looking for. First there's going to be it is striking tableau of divided government Nancy Pelosi the new speaker of the house. Sitting directly behind a president over his shoulder threw out his speech. Obviously the speech is delayed by a week. Because about partial government shutdown because the two of them went coated tell over government funding it'll be fasting to watch how the two of them play off each other and that visual. But there's good striking visuals British seed Greg Kavanagh on the newly appointed Supreme Court justice highly controversial pick. Very for the first time with his colleagues at Wendy's deity unions in his robes and it will be interesting to watch whether Republicans. Actually have some stone faces with a Republican president that is not normal that is not unprecedented but we've seen even senate Republicans. He really skeptical of some of the president's recent comments on foreign policy and even domestic policy in last. And of course the big issue in the room tonight the elephant if you will is the president's border wall his call he's dug in. He's coming to address this divided congress as there we are now just ten days before government funding runs out again this on the heels of that 35 day historic. Government shutdown that hurts so many people. Around the country so many families we'll see tonight what the president has to say about that we're that still on the table. Whether he opens the door to perhaps any compromise on how Democrats respond to that. As he said and in fact we're joined now by one of the democratic freshman this year a lot can no stranger to the reform great to see you congresswoman thanks so much for be years from. Here for Michigan give us in just your big picture taken when it means to be here for your first data the union's yeah right. It well it added to the list of things that as a freshman are kind of like. Blowing you away when you come here being on the house floor for the first time state of the union I've watched it every year my entire life that I can remember. Comes to be a part of it I think is a really big deal but I think a lot of freshmen are trying to ready for some of the theater since frankly be done because we got to get to work. There's a lot of us who came in. Right in the middle to shut down and we were like when do we get going on the things people elected us to do rated I was I was during that period so it's great to be here it's important thing for the nation have a state of the union. But I think there's lots of us are going to be sitting a man like OK let's get the theater through a little lead and on to real work to get here Samir colleagues democratic colleagues and native decided to boycott the speech they're not showing up did you ever consider not condoning based and that you know well now I just and this is something again that's the story historical. We've always done in this and some former action. On an Ivy League institution I believe that we should be a nation with the balance of powers to check and balance on you know the executive legislative branch. So it's part of an eye I didn't consider what got him. Do you think that some of that restlessness that freshman at bell could be seen or heard from that. From the chamber is there you have those moments before with. You lies started from the chamber I mean is this going to be Iraq is you know I. Certainly not my approach but there might be some who you decide to say something. We did all get an email this morning reminding us that last year someone got caught playing candy crush on our own. And that the cameras. Yes so I think we all took a moment to remember that this is a very stately event and I for one I'm gonna follow that rule but. Don't go out what's your mindset going into the night as the president is gonna have the floor for over an hour yeah the White House is teasing nannies and talk about unity. Bipartisanship. Is that some at this point two years into his term in new congress can you trust battered you look at that would pretty deep colleges and it. Deeds not words right I mean I wanna hear a message of unity that's as good. But I want to see deeds of unit and for me that means getting to work on the things that both parties say they care about right so infrastructure. I we have a lot of talk about the importance of infrastructure from both sides the I have yet to pay for it. The at a figure out how to put in that once in A generation investment he can't just say it over and over and make it real it's got to actually be action. So I I wanna see good signal but I that I wanna see the follow like you. Expected congressman to talk a little bit about this issue of the wall the negotiations over the wall where do you fall on the idea of a compromise he says he's moved a little bit. Nancy Pelosi spend so steadfast in no money no wal period do you think there needs to be a little wiggle room on the democratic side. For me I mean I've I was a former CIA officer and pentagon official I worked my entire life to protect the homeland from attack so. I'm willing to have the conversation about border security and I believe the Democrats wanna have that conversation the president obviously wants to have a conversation where we need technology lets get it. Where we need more border agents let's get them. On if we need reinforcement of and seeing her some let's candidate and then let's move on we are not that far apart. But we gotta figure out how to compromise getting a room kick out the cameras no offense. And get something done everyone is watching us and we cannot going to shut down into Mary Alice is spent the morning Daryn running around the hill talking to guests have congress people coming answer who's your guests tonight yes uses is amazing woman from my district name's Amanda Thomas show and she was the first on survivor of Larry not sir the the man who abuse systematically abuse young women. In in and around Michigan State University seriously yeah that is my district Michigan State go green go white. It and it will she came forward and you refuse to be swept under the rug. I'm she filed the first title nine complaint and many of those are the ways we know about the systematic abuses because she came forward. And just refuse to be silent so she's an activist she's amazing and she's coming to join me today. As we all Wear white and talk about the importance of and women's voices about it was an important message to send congresswoman Melissa -- from Michigan thanks so much for comedies are having enjoyed tonight. As he let the congresswoman go Mary our pulses as we said did spend your time today talking a little bit to some of these guests up on capital consistent. You know congressman from and when women from around the country really playing to showcase issues that matter to them. Issues that matter to their home towns through room. These serve a personification. Of issues that are important to them with the people that are going to be sitting there in the audience so we talked to one police officer who is really clicked. His body on the line trying to fight. The OP 08 epidemic we talked to others. We've had others he. Here is watching lots and out. Explain to me how you came to choose Chris for this honor to be your guests today at the scene union. Looked and the drug prices the drug addiction crisis is very very real nobody knows that more than the people who live in Ohio. Chris as a police officer and he's Liverpool Ohio and her personal experience. Actually it was overdose. What fentanyl. After a drug. Arrest unfortunately our privacy seconds. In that country is Florence the epidemic is concerned and anybody that doesn't believe that just come to our area community and it's morally worse. How the president's comments hurt. And especially at city capture and I can said that readiness to serve and he he. And especially. Politicians or otherwise if you haven't served as a team environment and tar ball when you and remove people from certain apps comfort not. A ballot Greece and just for politics. Cabbies here because the community did she grew up in lives. Is facing a challenge. Let me it's ever have to face Larry water they drink they depend. Has been contaminated. Tonight. Hand. Transit. Trump address. This issue in his state of the union would be I think. Real steps forward and that's what we're hoping more. It's. Sort of so many of those voices up in the gallery tonight the First Lady has a diverse crowd of people coming as well including. A six grader Joshua trump who has been bullied because of his namely interest in to see and hear from him. From him and also some the other families who have been affected the White House says by illegal immigration in this country. What does interest in those last two voices there we heard from. He will have no personal stories a transgender navy veteran talking about how hurt he felt by the president's comments over the last year. And then a mom who's been fighting water contamination in her home town in Michigan just outside Flint. People bringing in those really personal stories from their home towns here the nation's cap. And we're joined now by a man who has his finger on the pulse of many different parts of the country Frank Luntz Paul stern. A focus group are great to see your frank thanks for coming in you know wanted to get your take on this moment. For the president we've seen the poll numbers you've been talking to real people. It seems like a pretty critical juncture for him given the low approval rating historic low at two years and many in many cases. Do you think today is a day that he can use this platform to sort of turn things around stop the bleeding if you. There's not a choice at this point. This is the last major speech he gives before people start to focus on 20/20 this is the last opportunity has to basically we focus a reset. Where he stands for the public and as you heard the congressman moments ago. There are the public is looking for answers they're looking for solutions are looking for results. He had a somewhat successful first two years but that doesn't matter people want to know what he can do for me now and I'm going to be watching to see both. The types of plants and he prioritizes. And actually how the Democrats respond to a. You just tell the focus group just a couple weeks ago at your home in Los Angeles for vice news tonight. On HBO we have a little bit of that and we'll talk about it on the other side here's what some of those folks had to say about the situation the presidents and right now. Okay. You re prize. That people are hungry in Washington and that people are not getting paid. And you all think it's okay. I don't think it's okay but I do think it's necessary because we can not give in to AT and give a toddler two year old and throwing a tantrum because he get what it wants you don't give in. He had no authority to shot down the government for a reason. Nancy Pelosi said Null I'm going to call your shots okay. The issue is. It's Nancy Pelosi commenting enact a reason why aren't they getting there and it's secure until of the United States I say this. I don't pickle ball as it is the right solution I do think border security is extremely important. He can continue to shut down over anything that she doesn't get what she walks and that's what this president has shown us that's what concerns me. He just as things got feisty and that group frank is on Q we got that. The yelling in the partisanship coming out here on the steps of the capitol that's what's happening at that this country and and I applaud vice and HBO for being willing to bring the voices. From America to the public as you do right now and ABC. I think the key is so we don't listen anymore. That we want to be heard but we don't want to learn we don't wanna leave we just be in essence want to shout and that's why. The person said don't give into a temper tantrum there was an attack on trump but it's happening on both sides right now. And the level of intensity and ugliness is something that not seen. In the 25 years and I've been working in in this area. It to find that there are issues that unite people. Always talk when I'm talking to voters how many issues come up. Regardless of the party you know people talk about health care. And wages and jobs so the issues are red are uniting people. How come politicians Casspi. Those issues because of personalities overwhelming issues and the fact this if you cut people on both sides. That want to polarize it actually appreciate the opportunity to try to drive a wedge. On education on transportation. Even on immigration there are compromises that could be asked. And yet nobody wants to bring in about two reasons number one is to base will turn against them and number two is their colleagues here in Washington. They too are polarized and so you are punished if you try to reach common ground who are punished if you come to the center. Can be difficult to see how that that gap is healed it might take another election of course it's coming up point one integration. We can't win them on this in the interest in the and I know that people watched him they have deficits sides right now but I'm praying that somebody will come forward. On both sides and say hey enough is enough there's enough that we agree on as you said that we can actually move the country forward. You can disagree without being destructive and they've got to figure that out. Now thanks to frank thank you so much and of course your focus group is airing on vice news tonight on HBO we'll have you back leader's name for special coverage you're an ABC news live has also thanks to frank. For that one they stay in the state of the union team down go over. To BBC news bureau or Katharine fall there's has been tracking. Some of the promises the president laid out last year in his State of the Union Address how are things matching up now a year later Katherine. Let's start with the first promised the president made one year ago about immigration let's play the tape and you break it down here's. In recent months my administration has met extensively with both Democrats. And Republicans. To craft a bipartisan approach. To immigration reform. Based on these discussions. We presented. Congress. Would they detailed proposal. That should be supported. By both parties as a fair compromise. Our Catherine so where we stand now you're later. The identity heard that president about mass steadying and talk up a fair compromise that when he talked about failed the senate sixty to 39 so we're going to be hearing. A lot more about these immigration compromises. Tonight at the city union were heard that. We're told that he we'll talk about it and look he's continuing to fight. For a while funding with Democrats not budging but the reality is that that you just heard there that has not been accomplished in an immigration plan hasn't passed them. All right so let's do one more Catharine thanks for that immigration obviously a hot topic. Left on resolved on accomplish from last year we'll see what he has to say tonight. But another big issue that he is that there was talk about in the last you're seeing the address was trade what did he have to say there are tickled us. Work to fix bad trade deals and negotiate. New ones and they'll be good ones but they'll be fear. And we will protect. American workers and American intellectual property. Through strong enforcement. Of our trade rules. Our Catherine a bit of a mixed bag on trade but they're little but from a better our primary they know little bit of a better outcome now since. Then he is renegotiated NAFTA with Mexico and Canada has caught the US and CA this is also one of his campaign promises but the big thing here seven. Is that this this this replacement still needs congressional approval we expect him. To talk more about that in the state of the union tonight. All right captain Paul there's force in DC bureau thanks so much Catherine and we should say. They Catherine folders in the whole ABC news political team have if fact check desk tonight under way throughout the president's speech and the democratic response. A full coverage and abcnews.com or right here ABC news live will be taking some of those fact checks through the night in bringing them to you so hope you join us for that. Meanwhile Mary Alice I'm struck by the big political headline that's sort of hovering over the state of the union this year and that is big developments. Around president trumps inaugural committee. We've learned overnight the federal investigators in the southern district of New York are now looking into that and potential wrongdoing there. There's always been a conversation about where the Russia investigations would go. And now this is a conversation reminding us that that's just the tip of the ice we cannot do in my investigating yet this administration is a whole different set of prosecutors and we know they're members of congress to. That are keen on investigating this administration Jim so we're learning even more about spinoff investigation. And our Johnson Tucci chief investigative reporter broke the story last night had all the papers chasing after John great to see you sir. Breakdown for us what this means. When we hear that the federal prosecutors are now looking into the trump inauguration. Debt and Mary Alice happy CAD in choosing teal white out another subpoena just keep everybody busy but so what we're looking Herat is that this is basically saying to us that is Bob Mueller. According to all reporting is winding down his investigation. The southern district of New York is just getting started we've learned over night. That a subpoena was put on two lawyers for the trump inaugural committee they're looking for documents for records cell phone text messages. From anyone involved in the 2017. Inauguration it was the most expensive inauguration. In modern American history a 107 million dollars raised. 104 million dollars spent. And really when you're trying to understand. Where this probe is going the subpoena according to sources familiar with it did explain it to us last night security ABC or learning is that this subpoena. Is wide ranging they are looking into guest list to attended the many events that led up to the inauguration and the celebration that January 20 day they're looking for what donors got for any contributions they gave did they get access to the president. And the first family to to get a photo with president trump for their donations. And that's really what we're seeing from this probe that is what what the subpoena does outlined Gavin. Is really we're gonna looking a little bit of everything. There are some specifics mentioned they are mentioning one businessman lives donated previously to bolt Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton he made a donation just shy and million dollars to the Donald Trump inauguration fund and they also asked for information orange to right. That is a credit card processing company was hired. By inauguration to process. Any payments that remained on their web site what's interesting about that company DeVon and Mary Alice. That company's one and it's early investors Josh Kushner his brother Jared Kushner the husband out of pocket drop. All right Johnson TJ great stuff thanks for that my friend and much more to abcnews.com. See you later sir anywhere else trying to say unbelievable. And numbers that were unbelievable to people at the time which is part of it raised questions initially. And many more investigations to not just formal investigation separate investigation other investigations under way about seven district as well and swears his former personal attorney. Michael Cohen as John said cooperating as part of this so. Much more to come meanwhile. We're looking across the river into Virginia at another major political saga if you will scandal for many Virginians. And many an African American community Ralph north and the democratic governor. Still in office today digging in in the wake of that racist photo that appeared in his medical school yearbook meanwhile a new controversy. And roiling the lieutenant governor as well just in Fairfax are Tommy Thomas is over Virginia he's been tracking the story Tom bring us the latest what's the latest development. DeVon and Mary Alice great to be with you tonight we actually have some breaking news I just spoke with a close friend. Of the governor's was just told me that governor north some does not plan on resigning he is not expect of a northward to resign. Any time soon he thinks he's gonna dig in and he believes that he can work through this and get over this. This source is a close friend of the governors who works for them says that he believes that governor north and Walt we'll stick it through the basically apologize shall take responsibility. And will work to build bridges again now whether this can happen it's still unknown because nearly every single Virginia politician. All the major Democrats running for president have called on governor or from to resign. At this point right now lease of course according to a source was been in close contact with the governor. He does not plan on resigning I can tell you this the governor has no public schedules. No public events for this week on his schedule he has nothing scheduled. Tonight so. Any emitted press conference of him resigning is is not on the horizon. At least as of yet so this news we're just getting a few moments ago but but it it's pretty solid. As from somebody who spoke to the governor and and knows about his thinking I asked this source should you think you can. He can be forgiven in Virginia. For appearing in black face mean that it has hurt. So many people across this country he says that that he's already asked for forgiveness and he's taken responsibility for is action for something he points out that happened. More than thirty years ago now you the big story line of course what's happening with lieutenant governor Fairfax and lieutenant governor Fairfax has been accused of sexual misconduct when that happened back in 2004 he says this is a blatant lie and a political smear the person who is accusing him has still remained anonymous but we know that this woman. Has retain the same legal team as doctor Christine glossy Ford. Of course the they did that the woman who accused a Supreme Court justice Brett Cavanaugh. Of sexually assaulting her years ago. So lots of twists and turns someone of a political crisis down here in Richmond but we are fallen every step of the way and as of right now it looks like this is just taken another turn with governor north and appearing. Not to resign. Back to you guys. If thanks so much time and I'm struck by the connection to see these saint Mary Alice. It in his it will resurface this whole conversation about race racism our politics. The Democratic Party quick to pounce and over north but also we have Stacy Abrams tonight. Who with the work that governor democratic governor of Georgia African American first woman first African American governor of Georgia I shall be delivering that democratic response and they wanted to. This to be on that and drawing contrasts with Republicans tonight that's exactly right cheek is literally kinds of faces that the Democratic Party wants to punch up and and showcase because they trust sex drive dramatic contrast with the GOP you know compared heavily Democrats in the party you have. Women women of color. In their ranks and they were excited to have the focus be on this powerful progressive African American woman. And now with his controversy in Virginia just a lot of heartache and frustration which of the Democratic Party and African. Making community near Virginia. And will be closely watching tonight who was in the audience who's not here of course will be keeping an eye and the Supreme Court justices may be. Ruth Bader Ginsburg permit who made her first public appearance yesterday. After that cancer surgery in December which was notable she came back we'll see if she shows up tonight I'm told it's unlikely but we'll see which justices are there also. Mary also be interesting to see which cabinet secretaries I don't show up of course the designated survivor designated search successor is always a parlor game can Washington state of the union night. Interesting twists this year many have president trumps cabinet secretaries are in an acting capacity. Which means they can't actually be the survivor. So well we'll have to see which which show up and which don't. And it's just another reminder of how much this president needs the members. I'm congress sitting there in the audience he need to senators and even those Republican senators. To get on board and approved and that and confirm his appointees he needs a fall cabinet. And it will be a big night here at ABC news live we'll have full team coverage beginning at 8:30 PM. Eastern time tonight you can want just streaming online abcnews.com of course the ABC news after. Give roku apple TV at home tonight watch is there it's a free service before political team. George Stephanopoulos on down from 8:30 PM through the speeches tonight continuing now. This into the evening pretend we're the same briefing room that definitely counts as well on Devin Dwyer on Capitol Hill. We'll see that's not.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.