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February 01, 2018

*-- Joe Kennedy: Trump 'targeting the laws that protect us' --*

Rep. Joe Kennedy said President Donald Trump has targeted laws meant to protect the American people, as he delivered the Democratic response to the State of the Union address on Tuesday.

Speaking at Diman Regional Technical School in Fall River, Mass., following Trump's address, Kennedy, D-Mass., said the president and his administration have made efforts to disrupt legislation meant to protect Americans and divide the country throughout his first year in office.

"It would be easy to dismiss the past year as chaos. Partisanship. Politics. But it's far bigger than that," he said. "This administration isn't just targeting the laws that protect us -- they are targeting the very idea that we are all worthy of protection."
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Kennedy described Trump's policies as a "zero-sum game" which forces Americans to choose between issues divided on partisan lines.

"Here is the answer the Democrats offer tonight: We choose both," he said. "We fight for both because the greatest, strongest, richest country in the world should not have to leave anyone behind"

Kennedy delivered a message for Dreamers in Spanish and appealed to members of the Black Lives Matter and #MeToo movements, as he dismissed the power of "bullies" to challenge the reslilliance of the union.

"Bullies may land a punch. They might leave a mark," he said. "But they have never, not once, in the history of our United States, managed to match the strength and spirit of a people united in defense of their future."
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Kennedy described the state of the union as "hopeful, resilient, enduring" while calling on fellow politicians to keep their promises.

"Politicians can be cheered for the promises they make," he said. "Our country will be judged by the promises we keep."

Kennedy's speech immediately followed Trump's address in which he touted the growing economy and his administration's push for tax reform and laid out a "four pillar" immigration plan.