On the eve of his all-but-certain impeachment acquittal in the Senate, President Donald Trump delivered his third State of the Union address, but the division between the parties was visually evident.
While the lingering impeachment trial cast an unavoidable cloud over the high-profile moment for the president, the address also provided the newly emboldened Trump the ultimate platform to steal the spotlight and project an air of victory directly to the American people.
Upon his introduction, there were Republican chants of "four more years." Reactions to his talking points were mixed. And as soon as he was finished, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ripped up her copy of his speech.
Here's how the night unfolded.
10:36 p.m. Pelosi seen ripping up Trump's speech
Standing behind Trump, who had just completed his address, Pelosi ripped up a copy of his State of the Union address.
Standing behind President Trump, Speaker Nancy Pelosi rips up a copy of his State of the Union address as soon as he is done delivering the speech. https://t.co/2qpQQzd8sv #SOTU pic.twitter.com/NTyknKiyYD— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 5, 2020
Reporters asked Pelosi on her way out of the chamber why she ripped up the speech.
"Because it was a courteous thing to do considering the alternative," she said. "It was such a dirty speech."
--ABC News' Sarah Kolinovsky
10:22 Trump surprises military wife
As Trump promised to "end America's wars in the Middle East," he paid homage to Amy Williams, who was seated in the chamber as one of his guests with her young son.
"For the past seven months, she has done it all while her husband, Sgt. 1st Class Townsend Williams, is in Afghanistan on his fourth deployment to the Middle East. Amy's kids have not seen their father's face in many months. Amy, your family's sacrifice makes it possible for all of our families to live in safety and peace -- we thank you," he said.
Trump then introduced her husband who was waiting in the wings to surprise his family.
Watch the moment a military husband surprises his wife and two kids at the State of the Union.
"I am thrilled to inform you that your husband is back," Pres. Trump says, "he is here with us tonight, and we couldn't keep him waiting any longer." https://t.co/2qpQQzd8sv pic.twitter.com/MU6lY02J5K— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 5, 2020
As the couple greeted one another in tears, loud chants of "USA" broke out among the crowd.
--ABC News' Mariam Khan
10:21 p.m. Parkland shooting victim's father pulled out of gallery
Fred Guttenberg, the father of 14-year-old Jaime who was killed in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, was Speaker Pelosi's guest at the address, but after the president said he would protect gun rights.
Trump said he was committed to "always protect your second amendment right to keep and bear arms," saying it was "under siege all across the country."
Guttenberg was seen shouting from the speaker's box, "What about my daughter?"
A plain-clothed officer came and removed him.
Guttenberg had thanked Pelosi on Twitter earlier in the day for inviting him as her guest.
"I cannot thank you enough for your commitment to issues important to Americans and to the issue most important to me on dealing with gun violence," he tweeted.
ABC News' John Parkinson and Shoshana Dubnow
10:09 pm Trump says ISIS has been 100% destroyed'
"Three years ago, the barbarians of ISIS held over 20,000 square miles of territory in Iraq and Syria. Today, the ISIS territorial caliphate has been 100 percent destroyed, and the founder and leader of ISIS -- the bloodthirsty killer al-Baghdadi -- is dead," Trump declared.
However, earlier Tuesday the Pentagon released a report that said the death of al-Baghdadi has not had much of an impact on ISIS’s operations. The IG says the DIA assessed that al Baghdadi’s death would have little effect on ISIS’s ability "to maintain continuity of operations, global cohesion, and at least it’s current trajectory."
Trump gave his thanks to the family of Kayla Mueller, a humanitarian aid worker who was held hostage in Syria by al-Baghdadi before she was killed. She was 26 years old. Her family was in the chamber for the president's address.
"On the night that United States Special Forces Operators ended Al Baghdadi's miserable life, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, received a call in the Situation Room. He was told that the brave men of the elite Special Forces team, that so perfectly carried out the operation, had given their mission a name -- "Task Force 8-14." It was a reference to a special day: August 14th -- Kayla's birthday. Carl and Marsha, America's warriors never forgot Kayla -- and neither will we," Trump said.
--ABC News' Mariam Khan
10:05 p.m. Trump hails McConnell for his work in confirming federal judges
Trump gave a hat tip to Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell for his work in confirming a record number of federal judges in the Senate. McConnell has long said that confirming federal judges is his top priority.
"With every action, my administration is restoring the rule of law and re-asserting the culture of American freedom. Working with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell -- thank you Mitch -- and his colleagues in the Senate, we have confirmed a record number of 187 new federal judges to uphold our Constitution as written. This includes two brilliant new Supreme Court Justices, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh," Trump said to loud cheers in the chamber.
"And we have many in the pipeline," Trump quipped.
He added, "My administration is also defending religious liberty, and that includes the Constitutional right to pray in public schools. In America, we do not punish prayer. We do not tear down crosses. We do not ban symbols of faith. We do not muzzle preachers and pastors. In America, we celebrate faith. We cherish religion. We lift our voices in prayer, and we raise our sights to the Glory of God!"
--ABC News' Mariam Khan
10:01 p.m. Prescription drug costs
Trump said that his administration has been working to lower prescription drug costs -- a signature campaign promise of the president and one area where bi-partisan efforts seemed possible.
In October, the House of Representatives passed a bill that would allow the government to bargain with drug companies on some prescription drug prices. The Senate also has a bi-partisan bill its working on, though that bill has not moved out of committee.
Though the House bill, HR3, passed, it is unlikely that the Senate will take up the bill, leaving many legislative efforts to lower drug costs stymied.
In response to his remarks, a group of Democrats held up three fingers and chanted "HR3."
ABC News' Allison Pecorin and John Parkinson
9:52 p.m. Limbaugh surprised with Medal of Freedom
As the president announced the radio personality would receive the medal, Limbaugh's jaw dropped.
"Rush, in recognition of all that you have done for our nation, the millions of people a day that you speak to and that you inspire, and all of the incredible work that you have done for charity, I am proud to announce tonight that you will be receiving our country's highest civilian honor, the presidential Medal of Freedom," Trump said. "I will now ask the First Lady of the United States to present you with the honor."
JUST IN: President Trump honors Rush Limbaugh with the Presidential Medal of Freedom during #SOTU address: "Thank you for your decades of tireless devotion to our country."February 5, 2020
First lady Melania Trump fastened the medal of honor around his neck in the middle of the speech. Limbaugh appeared emotional.
Limbaugh, a conservative political commentator, was just recently diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer.
--ABC News' Allison Pecorin and Lauren King
9:49 p.m. Trump introduced 4th grader
Trump introduced a fourth grader who has been waiting to attend a school of her choosing under an opportunity scholarship. It was an opportunity for Trump could discuss "school choice" initiatives, which allow federal funding for specific students to follow those students to schools of their choosing, allowing government money to support charter schools, private schools and other types of learning institutions.
"The next step forward in building an inclusive society is making sure that every young American gets a great education and the opportunity to achieve the American dream," Trump said. "Yet, for too long, countless American children have been trapped in failing government schools."
School choice has been criticized by Democrats, who say that this mechanism removes critical funding from vulnerable public schools, creating greater opportunity gaps for students in struggling school districts.
--ABC News' Allison Pecorin
9:47 p.m. Guaido introduced during the address
"Here this evening is a man who carries with him the hopes, dreams, and aspirations of all Venezuelans. Joining us in the gallery is the true and legitimate President of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó," Trump said.
President Trump: "Here this evening is a man who carries with him the hopes, dreams, and aspirations of all Venezuelans. Joining us in the gallery is the true and legitimate President of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó." https://t.co/2qpQQzd8sv #SOTU pic.twitter.com/9Xpw1m92fq— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 5, 2020
The opposition leader was recognized by the U.S. last year as Venezuela's legitimate president. The U.S. also vowed that Nicolas Maduro would be pushed from power.
9:45 p.m. Trump calls on lawmakers to support legislation banning unauthorized immigrants from 'free government health care'
Trump called on the lawmakers in front of him to support legislation that would ban unauthorized immigrants from "free government health care," after which he said those who don't support such restrictions "stand with the radical left."
"Over 130 legislators in this chamber have endorsed legislation that would bankrupt our Nation by providing free taxpayer-funded health care to millions of illegal aliens, forcing taxpayers to subsidize free care for anyone in the world who unlawfully crosses our borders," Trump said.
While it’s not clear to what federal legislation Trump is referring, nearly every Democrat running to replace him has supported covering unauthorized immigrants as part of their health care proposals.
The Affordable Care Act’s insurance marketplace currently excludes undocumented immigrants and they’re also largely barred from enrolling in Medicaid and Medicare.
Regardless of legislation, Trump has made his own progress in keeping out immigrants who may use public benefits. Last month, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority lifted a lower court injunction to allow a new wealth standard for immigrants seeking legal status, meaning it’s now easier to get denied for being poor.
--ABC News' Quinn Owen
9:33 p.m. Trump takes a not-so-subtle swipe at some of the left-leaning political candidates.
"Socialism destroys nations but always remember freedom unifies the soul," Trump said.
This statement was placed in the speech with little context surrounding it. His following line referenced military spending.
--ABC News' Allison Pecorin
9:29 p.m. 'I moved rapidly to revive the US economy'
Trump said that from the instant he took office he moved rapidly to revive the American economy, "slashing a record number of job killing-regulations, enacting historic and record-setting tax cuts and fighting for fair and reciprocal trade agreements."
"And very incredibly, the average unemployment rate under my administration is lower than any administration in the history of our country," Trump added.
The U.S. is in a record setting 11th year of economic expansion with unemployment at a 50-year low, the stock market is up about 20 % since last year and wages are growing.
But according to one of the main measurements of economic health, real GDP, the economy is growing at a rate slower than it was two years ago. Real GDP increased 2.3% in 2019 compared to 2.9% in 2018. This average is far from the 4% growth Trump promised in 2016.
Additionally, job growth has slowed since 2018. In 2019 job growth totaled 2.1 million compared with a gain of 2.7 million in 2018.
--ABC News' Mariam Khan
President Trump touts economic growth and military might as he opens his #SOTU address: "In just three short years we have shattered the mentality of American decline."February 5, 2020
9:24 p.m. Trump touts job growth in the African American community
"The unemployment rate for African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans and Asian-Americans has reached the lowest levels in history," Trump said.
The president has made jobs and jobs growth an essential talking point as he heads toward the 2020 race and he has consistently emphasized job growth in African American communities.
Trump has attributed much of his success in job growth to tougher trade policies with other nations.
--ABC News' Allison Pecorin
Pres. Trump: "Three years ago, we launched the great American comeback. Tonight I stand before you to share the incredible results."February 5, 2020
9:21 p.m. Touting the economy
Trump launched into his address touting his work on the economy, something he said he moved to "rapidly" revive from the "instant I took office."
"The years of economic decay are over," Trump said. "We have totally rejected the downsizing."
"And we are never, ever, ever going back," Trump declared, adding that "our economy is the best that it's ever been."
--ABC News' Mariam Khan
9:16 p.m. Limbaugh to receive presidential medal of freedom
The White House has confirmed that radio personality Rush Limbaugh will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
"Limbaugh is a champion of the Constitution, advocate of civic engagement, and a committed patriot," according to a news release. "His extraordinary contribution to American life was recognized during President Trump’s 2020 State of the Union Address where Limbaugh was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom."
--ABC News' Karen Travers
9:13 p.m. Designated survivor
The State of the Union's designated survivor is Interior Secretary David Bernhardt.
--ABC News' Ben Gittleson
9:06 p.m. 'Four more years!'
After handing out copies of his speech, Trump appeared to ignore Speaker Nancy Pelosi's outstretched hand and did not shake her hand.
Pelosi then introduced the president and lawmakers applauded him. There were also chants of "four more years."
9:05 p.m. Undivided attention
"Well I think you always see at the State of the Union, the president gets the undivided attention and is able to set his agenda and really highlight his successes. He always has stuck to his script on the State of the Union, as most presidents do, because you want to include all of these successes. ... I think it will also be an attempt to sort of reset the narrative and take advantage of what is not only a lot of good news for the president, but a lot of bad news for Democrats," former Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock said on ABC News Live.
9:03 p.m. Trump is introduced
The president has been introduced and is walking down the aisle and greeting lawmakers as he makes his way to the dais.
9:02 p.m. Foreign policy in the speech
"There won't be a lot about foreign policy. There wasn't a lot of foreign policy last year, but the story he can tell is going after people who he said shouldn't be alive today," said ABC News Chief Global Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz, referencing Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani.
8:57 p.m. House impeachment managers sitting together
The House Democrats serving as impeachment managers in the Senate trial are mostly sitting together. Reps. Adam Schiff, Jerry Nadler, Zoe Lofgren, Val Demings, Jason Crow and Sylvia Garcia are mostly sitting together. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries is in the Democratic leadership, so he is seated closer to the center and away from the other six.
--ABC News' John Parkinson
8:54 p.m. Speculating on whether Trump will take a swipe at his adversaries
Ahead of the address, ABC News Chief National Correspondent and Nightline coanchor said, that it's "hard to see this president missing the opportunity to poke fun" at Democratic adversaries.
"The people who came after him, many of them, will be in the room looking him in the eye."
.@byronpitts says it's 'hard to see this president missing the opportunity to poke fun' at Democratic adversaries:February 5, 2020
8:47 p.m. The Trumps arrive at the Capitol
The president and first lady arrived at the Capitol at 8:44 p.m.
--ABC News' Ben Gittleson
8:41 p.m. Rush Limbaugh will sit with first lady
Radio personality Rush Limbaugh was seated in the first lady's box ahead of the State of the Union address.
On Monday, Limbaugh told his listeners that he's fighting advanced lung cancer.
"Worst thing that can happen is when there is something going on and you try to hide it and cover it up and eventually it's going to leak and people are like why didn't you just say it? Why'd you try to fool everybody," he said.
8:35 p.m. President, first lady leaving the White House
The president and first lady are leaving the White House and heading to the U.S. Capitol for the address.
8:34 p.m. Touting his trade agenda
Trump will celebrate his biggest legislative achievement since Democrats took control of the House in 2018 during his speech when he touts the revised trade agreement with Mexico and Canada.
The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, which Trump relentlessly assailed as "one of the worst trade deals ever made" and vowed to negotiate a better deal.
"Many politicians came and went, pledging to change or replace NAFTA – only to do absolutely nothing. But unlike so many who came before me, I KEEP MY PROMISES. Six days ago, I replaced NAFTA and signed the brand new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement into law," according to an excerpt of the president's address.
It was the second major achievement for Trump’s trade agenda this month, coming on the heels of the signing of a "Phase One" trade agreement with China.
"Days ago, we signed the groundbreaking new agreement with China that will defend our workers, protect our intellectual property, bring billions of dollars into our treasury, and open vast new markets for products made and grown right here in the USA," Trump is expected to say.
ABC News' Ben Gittleson and Jordyn Phelps
8:24 p.m. Excerpts from the State of the Union address are released
The White House released excerpts from the president's address, as prepared for delivery.
"The vision I will lay out this evening demonstrates how we are building the world’s most prosperous and inclusive society -- one where every citizen can join in America’s unparalleled success, and where every community can take part in America’s extraordinary rise," Trump will say, according to the released excerpts.
--ABC News' Ben Gittleson
8:16 p.m. Sanders to deliver State of the Union response
On his campaign schedule, Sanders indicated he would give his response to the president's State of the Union address from Manchester, New Hampshire, at 10:30 p.m.
The official Democratic response to the address will come from Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
-- ABC News' Adam Kelsey
8:09 p.m. Supreme Court justices who will be in attendance
Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Elena Kagan, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh were all planning to attend the address tonight, according to Supreme Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg.
-- ABC News Senior Washington Reporter Devin Dwyer
7:56 p.m. Lawmakers skipping the address
Two members of the so-called "Squad" were among a small, but growing list of lawmakers who were planning to skip the president's address.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., tweeted, "After much deliberation, I have decided that I will not use my presence at a state ceremony to normalize Trump’s lawless conduct & subversion of the Constitution. None of this is normal, and I will not legitimize it. Consequently, I will not be attending the State of the Union."
Rep. Ayana Pressley, D-Mass., shared a photo of herself on Twitter and said she could not "in good conscience" attend.
The State of the Union is hurting because of the occupant of the White House, who consistently demonstrates contempt for the American people, contempt for Congress & contempt for our constitution. I cannot in good conscience attend tonight's sham #SOTU → https://t.co/DTwG3Y7dK3 pic.twitter.com/Hres8eAFkK— Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (@RepPressley) February 4, 2020
Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are also expected to skip in the midst of their presidential campaigning efforts.
-- ABC News' John Parkinson and Ella Torres
7:40 p.m. The word 'impeachment' is not in the speech, Hogan Gidley says
Hogan Gidley, the White House principal deputy press secretary, told reporters that the word "impeachment" is not in the president's speech.
He repeated that detail a few times.
"I’ve read through the speech and I’ve not seen the word impeachment. So, you know, as he likes to say, we’ll see what happens, but I haven’t seen it," he told reporters gathered on the White House north lawn.
Later he said, "I’ve seen the speech but I’ve not seen the word impeachment, but as the president likes to say, we’ll see what happens."
Worth noting, Gidley didn't say that Trump wouldn't broach the subject.
-- ABC News' Ben Gittleson
State of the Union address comes amid impeachment trial
Four months after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi declared the start of a formal inquiry into the president, she takes her seat on the dais just over the president’s left shoulder as he addresses a chamber filled with Democrats who just weeks ago voted to impeach him.
It will be just the second time in history that an American president has delivered a State of the Union address amid an impeachment trial and the big question is if and how Trump might address it.
The White House had been coy about the extent to which the president will explicitly address impeachment but a senior official said the president will deliver a forward-looking message that will "lay out a vision of relentless optimism" in contrast to what the official said is "unjustified pessimism we are hearing from some in Congress."
When President Bill Clinton was in the same position in 1999, he didn’t so much as acknowledge the trial’s existence.
"There was no allusion, there was no mention, and there was no discussion of referencing the impeachment in the speech," according to Jeff Shesol, who served as a speechwriter for President Clinton and helped craft his 1999 State of the Union address.
Shesol said it was understood in the Clinton White House that it would have been counterproductive to mention impeachment in a speech that’s traditionally designed to be a unifying, policy-driven moment.
He suggested the Trump administration should adopt the same tact, warning that if the president gloats about his pending vindication in the Senate, "it's going to be unseemly to everybody but his base." But if they feel compelled to mention it, he said there is a way to do so in an elevated posture that puts the president above the political fray.
"I think the seemingly high-minded way of doing it would be to say, we've been through this divisive period, and the American people have made clear, they want to move on.
"The Senate will take a vote that will allow us to move on and get back to the work of the American people. And then the Republicans will cheer wildly and the Democrats will sit on their hands," he said.
Some of the president’s allies on the Hill have also expressed hope that the president will avoid the topic of impeachment and use his address as a forward-looking moment.
"Personally I’d advise him not to," said Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-Ala., "I think the American people want to have bipartisanship - actually want to get some stuff done and, and there's been an opportunity cost with all these deliberations. We've not got stuff done that we could get done."
"If I was him I would avoid that subject," said Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo. "I think there's plenty to talk about and it's an opportunity to move on. But the other option is to address it head on and he often has a head-on kind of guy."
Going beyond impeachment
Beyond the question of whether the president will address impeachment, the White House has said the address will be heavy on policy and focus on the president’s economic record. The theme of the address is "The Great American Comeback."
Trump, for his part, told Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Sunday that he’ll use the address to "talk about the achievements that we've made," claiming that "nobody has made achievements like we've made."
As for the prospect of a call for bipartisanship, Trump told Hannity "I'd like to" work with Democratic leadership in the future but acknowledged "it's pretty hard when you think about it" in the wake of the impeachment.
The president is expected to tout his economic record and what the White House has called a "blue-collar boom" under Trump’s watch. He will specifically trumpet the recently-ratified U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal.
The president will also make "specific calls to Congress" related to health care and lowering costs while also calling out what the president sees as "radical proposals being floated on the left," the official said. The White House cited prescription drug pricing, surprise medical billing, and plan flexibility as specific issues the president will address.
The president will also discuss immigration and tout progress in delivering on his central 2016 campaign promise to erect a continuous wall along the southern border. About 100 miles of new barriers have been constructed near the border under President Trump, according to Customs and Border Protection.
Most of those projects have replaced smaller, outdated designs with more massive steel barriers, access roads and motion detection technology. The administration has only built about 1 mile where older barriers did not previously exist. Legal action from property owners and concerned environmental activists has worked to slow construction.
The official said the president will also have firm words for so-called sanctuary cities that do not cooperate with the federal government in complying with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) requests.
On foreign policy, the official said the president will provide an update on military and diplomatic efforts around the world but said not to expect any "Earth-shattering or new" announcements but will strike a "forceful" and "strong" tone with regard to Iran.
As in years past, the White House has invited a roster of guests to sit in the first lady’s box who serve to embody a given policy. In 2018, the president highlighted the brutality of the North Korean regime by highlighting the brave story of escape of a defector. The man, Ji Seong-ho, received a standing ovation from the chamber as he hoisted the wooden crutches he used in his escape above his head.
The White House has not yet revealed the full list of guests invited to this year’s speech but said the guests will include Tony Rankins, an Army veteran who developed a drug addiction after returning from Afghanistan but has since recovered and is now employed in an administration-supported "Opportunity Zone" in Cincinnati, Ohio. Also invited is U.S. Border Patrol Deputy Chief Raul Ortiz, who acting CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan has said "epitomizes the core values of U.S. Customs and Border Protection."
ABC News' Quinn Owen contributed to this report.