Lance Gooden

President Trump issued his second State of the Union address on Tuesday. In the speech he successfully identified a direction for America’s future, one that demands cooperation and the complete focus of both political parties on expanding prosperity for all Americans. He also highlighted landmark achievements from the last two years while acknowledging heroes that helped make America history’s greatest nation.

Engrained in his vision for America was the need for security at home and abroad. President Trump touted his improvements to our security from negotiations with North Korea to departures from flawed nuclear and missile treaties with Russia and Iran. A collection of guests, facts and figures illustrated that America is still the world’s greatest nation, and that we can improve it if we recognize this and work together. His speech offers a timely reminder to my Democrat colleagues in the House: cooperation is a turnkey to unlocking the greatness of our society. They would do well to make use of it as we approach another government shutdown in the dispute for border security.

During the previous shutdown, Democrat leaders insisted they wouldn’t negotiate on funding for a border wall unless the government was open. In fact, over 60 Democrats said they would be open to border wall negotiations once the government was open. They now have the rare opportunity to show Americans they are politicians that stand by their word.

As we search for a resolution to the border funding negotiations, I hope President Trump’s speech reminds my colleagues of two things. First, that we are a nation made greater by immigrants, and we should adopt policies that embrace them. Second, that we are a nation of laws and those who cross the border illegally degrade the rules that underpin our society. As history’s greatest nation, we should welcome all of those who come to America in search of a better life, but absolutely none who are willing to disobey our laws with their very first steps on our land.

First elected in 2018, Congressman Lance Gooden represents Texas’ 5th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. The 5th District stretches from Dallas County to Cherokee, Henderson, Kaufmann, Anderson, Van Zandt and Wood Counties.

Lance and his wife, Alexa, live in Terrell with their son, Liam.

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