Transcript for Trump to deliver his 1st State of the Union address
High stakes this evening for president trump, who will stand before the congress and the nation in just a few hours now, delivering his first state of the union address. We'll told he will focus on the economy tonight, immigration, national security. And today, while at the white house, a tradition for anchors from all the networks to meet with the president off the record. President trump did tell me on the record what he would consider a great achievement. ABC senior white house correspondent Cecilia Vega with that tonight. Reporter: President trump's first state of the union address shrouded in secrecy. Only a handful of close aides seeing the final product. We worked on it hard. Covered a lot of territory including our great success with the markets and with the tax cut. And it's a big speech, an important speech. Reporter: A senior white house official tells ABC news the president gave specific instructions -- he wants this speech to be positive and uplifting. Today, sitting down with television anchors, he told David, "I want to see the country united, to bring it back from tremendous divisiveness," adding, "I will consider it a great achievement if I could make the country united." In his first address to a joint session of congress, the president promised -- The time for trivial fights is behind us. Reporter: What came next? A year of controversy and bitter partisan battles, with Robert Mueller's Russia investigation looming over it all. The president is not expected to mention Russia tonight. Today at the white house, he met with some of the first lady's guests, each representing a key theme. A family benefiting from the president's new tax plan. A father affected by the nation's opioid crisis. And to highlight the need for tougher border security, parents of two daughters killed by ms-13 gang members. Democrats already planning protests, some bringing dreamers those undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. As children, and dozens of lawmakers wearing black tonight in support of the "Me too" movement. So, let's get to Cecilia Vega, live at the white house tonight. And Cecilia, the president telling me today, you saw there, he wants to unite the country, get rid of the divisiveness. Unclear how much of the address will concentrate on that, but you're learning there were ma voices at the table who helped him sort of craft this speech? Reporter: And David, some of the names are going to give you a sense of the themes that president trump will hit on tonight. H.R. Mcmaster, Gary cone and Stephen Miller, the president's immigration hard liner senior policy as slider. I'm told that president trump for the last few weeks have been sending to aides words and key phrases that he wants to use tonight, and he's done full dress rehearsals for the last two days. He's making final preps all day here at the white house. All right. And Cecilia, you have reporting who will give the democratic response? Reporter: David, Joseph Kennedy, the congressman from Massachusetts, he is the grandson of Bobby Kennedy, will be giving this democratic response tonight.
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