White blazer-clad Democrat congresswomen sat slack-jawed and unimpressed during Tuesday night’s State of the Union address as President Trump ran down the country’s many achievements over the past year:
- Wages have risen at the fastest rate in decades. Nearly five million Americans previously on food stamps have gone off the dole.
- Unemployment among African-American, Hispanic Americans, Asian-Americans, and Americans with disabilities have fallen to all-time lows.
- More Americans are working today than at any other time in history.
- The United States has become the leading producer of oil and natural gas in the world. For the first time in 65 years, the United States is a net exporter of energy.
- Over 300,000 jobs were added last month, nearly twice the number expected.
The state of our union is strong.
The blasé congressladies couldn’t have cared less.
Nearly an hour into the speech, President Trump finally caught their attention. He observed that women have filled 58 percent of newly created jobs. At this, the representresses perked up. They applauded. They leapt to their feet. But they weren’t clapping for the women who had filled those newly created jobs; they were applauding themselves for winning an election. They waved. They pointed to themselves and to each other. They danced, I think. Finally they sat down—but not for long.
President Trump next touted that there are now more women in the workforce than ever before. Once again, the ladies jumped to their feet. More waving, turning, pointing, dancing.
Finally, President Trump delivered a singular thrill: he noted that more women will serve in this new Congress than at any other time in history. The gaggle erupted into a flurry of fist bumps and roof-raising.
Throughout Tuesday night’s address, President Trump struck an uncharacteristically subdued and elevated tone. It seems he knew his audience.
President Trump didn’t need to humiliate his critics because he knew they could do a better job of it themselves.
Uninterested in the welfare of their country or countrymen, those frivolous Democratic women in the white blazers, dresses and suits cheered only at the mention of their favorite subject: themselves. And what precisely were they applauding—that more women have been elected to Congress? Women constitute over 53 percent of registered voters. If voters were motivated primarily by sexual similarity, women would occupy every government office in the United States, from dogcatcher to president.
The congresswomen’s self-obsession struck a sharp contrast with other attendees in the hall, including a SWAT officer who rushed into the Tree of Life Synagogue shooting, enduring multiple gunshot wounds to save innocent lives; the father of a Navy Seaman killed on the USS Cole; and three World War II veterans who stormed the beaches of Normandy. Throughout the evening, those men applauded their country. When President Trump acknowledged their own achievements, none of them broke into a dance.
Narcissism is an occupational hazard of electoral politics. In the age of selfies and social media, the danger is doubled; for cynical politicians who thrive on identity politics, the disorder is inescapable.
As the 116th Congress begins, service has never looked so selfish.