Few American presidents can match the manner in which President Obama can deliver a well-written State of the Union address. He is superb!
However, Obama’s address Tuesday failed to inspire and enthuse his congressional audience or his national television audience. His strong and loyal political supporters said he had delivered a masterful message, but based on numerous reviews and critiques, the president fell short of the hopes of many.
It was the usual State of the Union speech, delivered by both Democratic and Republican presidents. A president’s inaugural address and first State of the Union addresses outline dreams and changes for the better. The speech by an incumbent as he launches his campaign for a second term, tries to pass over failures and unmet promises, blame the lack of positive results on the other party and call for new, groundbreaking legislation.
Obama’s Inaugural Address projected a new, brighter day for this nation and its people. His listeners were excited, and his call for “change” was accepted with enthusiasm and hope.
Now, three years later, Obama’s message rang hollow. He tried calling for new efforts, new programs and new goals, but it didn’t have the punch many of his supporters had hoped for. Part of the problem is that he is dealing with many unsuccessful efforts during the past three years, and viewers and listeners have reason to wonder whether he can have a better record of success if given another four years in the White House.
Many major conditions and challenges facing this country have not improved. In fact, they have become far more serious.
In the Republican response to Obama’s speech Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels pointed out that the percentage of Americans with jobs is at the lowest level in decades, one in five men of prime working age and nearly half of all people under 30 are unemployed. In three years, he said, the national debt has jumped by trillions of dollars, the federal government now spends one of every four dollars in the nation’s economy and borrows one of every three dollars it spends. The governor added, “no feature of the Obama presidency has been sadder than its constant efforts to divide us, to curry favor with some Americans by castigating others.”
It’s likely most presidential elections have been labeled as being “the most important of our generation.” Again, this is being said about the upcoming November election, but it does seem American voters will be asked to choose between two extremely differing philosophies in the 2012 election. One party calls for more government control in most every phase of our activities, and the other party believes government is meant to serve the people rather than supervise them.
The “fundamental changes in this country” Obama favors are dangerous and, if the GOP is to be successful, the person selected to challenge Obama will have to be strong, smart, articulate, visionary, honest and believable. Otherwise, with a growing number of Americans now receiving federal assistance in one way or another and counting on Obama to continue this aid, it is going to be extremely difficult for the GOP to win the race for the White House.
Four more years of the Obama administration will place this country in a perilous position.