Thursday, January 28, 2010

My inexpert analysis of the State of the Union address

I watched the President give his State of the Union address last night. It's a good thing I did because I wouldn't have recognized the speech as "analyzed" by many "experts" in the media.

It was a good and honest speech, I thought. It was unlike many of the hyperbolic speeches we've come to expect on such occasions. I was convinced that he believed and meant every word that he spoke. If I didn't necessarily agree with him on every single point, still I honor his seriousness of purpose and his continuing attempts to talk to people, including the self-important puffed-up politicians that were in the room with him last night (yes, including the Supreme Court justices), as if they were adults, and intelligent adults at that.

I was struck again that he refuses to give up on bipartisanship and on trying to change the toxic atmosphere in Washington. He talked about the deficit of trust and the need to reduce that deficit. He continued to reach out to Republicans by inviting them to bring their ideas to the table and by announcing he would meet with them regularly as a group.

He didn't back away from any of the initiatives he has proposed, even as he did tweak the emphasis a bit to put the spotlight more on the need to produce jobs and get the economy going in the right direction.

Perhaps the high point of the speech for me was his reminder to Democrats that they hold one of the largest majorities in legislative history and that people expect that they will use that majority to govern. He urged them not to "run for the hills" but to push on with their agenda.

It would help considerably if the Democrats had a strong leader out in front urging them forward. There is only one person on the scene at the moment who can be that leader. That person talked a good plan last night. Now let's see if he can execute it.

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