President Biden Delivers State of the Union Address: Standing Strongly for Freedom and Democracy

A nationally televised address given by President Joe Biden on March 8, 2023.

Mr. Speaker, Madam Vice President, Members of Congress, My Fellow Americans:

It is with great honor and dignity that I stand before you tonight as President of the United States of America. This year, our nation marks the 75th anniversary of the worst attack on our freedom and democracy, World War II. In the face of tyranny, the greatest generation fought for and defended our values. Now, once more, freedom and democracy are under assault, both at home and abroad.

Overseas, Vladimir Putin continues his ruthless and unjustified invasion of Ukraine, undermining the foundations of global peace and stability. Here at home, the previous administration's betrayal of our values and failed policies opened the door for domestic enemies of democracy alike. But make no mistake, America is a nation that rises to the challenge.

On the battlefield overseas, and in the battlefield of ideas at home, we will prevail. As President Reagan so famously said, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" Today, I say to Putin, "There is no wall Russia's aggression will not overcome, no border they will not cross, and no idea they will not undermine." America will continue to stand with our allies and partners abroad, and with the brave people of Ukraine who defend their homes against Putin's imperialist desires.

But the battle is not merely overseas. Here at home, the prior administration turned a blind eye to the assault on our democracy, and the freedoms we hold so dear. They betrayed the very ideals that bind us together as Americans and fostered a climate of misinformation and conspiracy. A climate that led to the events of January 6th, an Insurrection that sought to overthrow the will of the people, and undermine the very foundation of our democracy. But we, the people, chose to reclaim our democracy and rebuild it stronger than before.

We must continue to defend and strengthen our democratic institutions for future generations. We must stand up for our freedom and democracy both at home and abroad. America has never been, and will never be, a nation that chooses fear over freedom. It is with that resolve that I ask you, my fellow Americans, to join me in defending our democracy, for it is as strong and vibrant as ever.

We must also stand up for the rights and freedoms of all Americans, regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. The previous administration systematically undermined the rights of LGBTQ+ Americans, women, and people of color. But despite the efforts of those who seek to rollback the progress we have made as a nation, I stand here today saying that freedom and equality for all Americans is within our grasp.

We must also protect the right to reproductive freedom, including protecting access to comprehensive sex education, and ensuring that reproductive healthcare, including abortion, is affordable and accessible for all who need it. The rights of a woman to make decisions about her own body must be respected and protected. It is imperative that we continue to support initiatives that break down the barriers to success for women and promote gender equality.

Mr. Speaker, Madam Vice President, Members of Congress, we the people, are united in our values and our commitment to democracy. As we navigate these challenging times, let us remember that the state of our Union is strong, and together, we will ensure that our Union stands as a beacon of freedom and democracy for generations to come. Thank you, and may God bless the United States of America.

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