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A first?: In speech, President Trump asks God to bless ‘the entire world’

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©MANDEL NGAN / AFP

US President Donald Trump speaks during a lunch with House and Senate leadership in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC on March 1, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 04/07/17

Politicotakes note:

After announcing that he’d ordered U.S. missile strikes on a Syrian airfield in response to a chemical weapons attack on civilians, President Donald Trump closed his remarks with a refrain that has been common among presidents since Ronald Reagan: “God bless America.” But he didn’t stop there. Instead, he went on, adding, “and the entire world.” Richard Nixon appears to have been the first president to use the phrase “God bless America” in a speech, though it later became a common closing line for Ronald Reagan and his successors. George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama all closed each of their state of the union addresses with some variation on the line. None extended those blessings to the world. The call for blessings on all humanity was a surprising move from Trump, who rode a nationalist wave and an “America first” message to the White House. But Trump’s remarks Thursday night, delivered at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, were infused with an internationalist message and an appeal to shared human experience.

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