By Ross Sherman
Media Relations Manager

February 8, 2023

President Joe Biden delivered his second State of the Union address Tuesday night. Ahead of the speech, RepresentUs called on the president to put country over party, talk about threats to our democracy, and urge Congress to tackle corruption.

I watched the speech, and overall, he delivered. While he could’ve hit the corruption theme harder, we were inspired to hear the president make a strong case for defending America’s democracy.

Here are five standout moments from the State of the Union.

Country over party 🤩

The speech was full of unifying themes. President Biden mentioned that he had signed 300 bipartisan bills since taking office, including the hugely-significant updated Electoral Count Act

Quote from Joe Biden: "In fact, I signed over 300 bipartisan laws since becoming President. From reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, to the Electoral Count Reform Act, to the Respect for Marriage Act that protects the right to marry the person you love."


Quote from Joe Biden: "Democracy must not be a partisan issue. It must be an American issue."

Threats to democracy 🤩

The president also strongly called out threats to democracy. Importantly, he closed his speech with a stirring call to defend our elections, including from political violence.

Quote from Joe Biden: "Every generation of Americans has faced a moment where they have been called on to protect our democracy, to defend it, to stand up for it. And this is our moment."

Tackling corruption 😐

Fighting corruption is one of the most unifying issues in the country. It’s something that Republicans, Democrats and everyone else consistently say is one of the top issues facing the country.

The president didn’t use the word “corruption” once in his speech – a missed opportunity to bolster his overall bipartisan theme. However, he did hint at the reason why a functioning democracy is the single most important issue of our time.

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RepresentUs is America’s leading anti-corruption organization working city-by-city, state-by-state to fix our broken political system.