"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Politico On State Of The Union Speech: “Obama’s Big Campaign Speech”

January 23rd, 2012 by mopns · No Comments

The emperor has no clothes?

Tomorrow night, President Obama will deliver his State of the Union address to Congress. But Politico writes today that it’s likely to be much more of a campaign speech than a serious attempt to move the country forward.

Politico writes, “The most important 2012 campaign event so far — and almost certainly the most important until the parties’ national conventions this summer — will take place Tuesday night under the guise of a governing ritual. . . . Obama will appear on Capitol Hill as a president who is virtually wiping out the space, never wide to begin with, between politicking and governing in the West Wing as Election Day nears.

“If there are deals to be cut, by this logic, they will come only if Obama wins a second term and greets a chastened opposition in 2013. In the meantime, nearly every aspect of daily life in his West Wing is influenced by a campaign mentality — never mind press secretary Jay Carney’s regular scolding of White House reporters to stop viewing everything the president does ‘through the prism of politics.’”

Further, Politico points out, “The president gave the first detailed look at Tuesday’s address in a video message Saturday dispatched through his campaign, not the White House, which is usually the origin for previews. Immediately after the speech, he will barnstorm five states that figure prominently in the campaign’s playbook for reaching 270 electoral votes: Iowa, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado and Michigan.”

With the president’s focus apparently on campaigning, it seems unlikely he’ll address the fact that tomorrow will mark 1,000 since his fellow Democrats in the Senate have produced a budget. Noting this unfortunate milestone, ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee Jeff Sessions and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan write today, “Tomorrow will mark a sad milestone in the history of the United States Senate: the 1,000th day since Senate Democrats last offered a budget plan to the American people. Senate Democrats abandoned their official duty to prioritize Americans’ hard-earned tax dollars and tackle our nation’s most pressing economic challenges — dealing a painful blow to fiscal progress that may be felt for some time. . . . The president and his party’s leaders have yet to detail a credible budget plan to prevent the fiscal crisis that awaits us should we continue down the current path to debt, doubt, and decline. Such a crisis would threaten the economic security, health security, and retirement security of every American. If the president wishes to begin a genuine dialogue with the American people in tomorrow’s State of the Union address, then he must hold his own party accountable for its dogged refusal to produce a plan to prevent this crisis and lift this cloud of uncertainty from the economy.  The president must also deliver what he has so far refused: serious reforms to change our debt course and prevent fiscal disaster.”

So will President Obama make tomorrow’s speech mostly a campaign event like politico suggests, or will he attempt to tackle some serious problems like the lack of “a credible budget plan,” as Sen. Sessions and Chairman Ryan point out?

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