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On Tuesday, January 12, President Obama will deliver his eight State of the Union (SOTU) address. Although other presidents have chosen to deliver post-election SOTU addresses—Lyndon Johnson in 1969, while Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, and Jimmy Carter submitted theirs in writing—most likely, it will be President Obama’s last.
It will not be his last speech. He will continue to speak out on gun violence. Unless there’s a crisis, there are two speeches, his Democratic National Convention address in July, and his farewell address next January that will gather the most attention.
President Obama might write more Op-Ed pieces like the one he recently published in the New York Times (a follow-up on his executive order on guns).
In his characteristic way, he has been telling the Republican Party much like it is. I hope the jabs continue.
President Obama’s presidency has been a success. As Michael Grunwald writes in Politico, “When you add up all the legislation from his frenetic first two years, when Democrats controlled Congress, and all the methodical executive actions from the past five years, after Republicans blocked his legislative path, this has been a BFD of a presidency, a profound course correction engineered by relentless government activism. As a candidate, Obama was often dismissed as a talker, a silver-tongued political savant with no real record of achievement. But ever since he took office during a raging economic crisis, he’s turned out to be much more of a doer, an action-oriented policy grind who has often failed to communicate what he’s done.”
His SOTU address on Tuesday should set out what he believes are the most salient issues facing the United States. The President still commands the bully pulpit. I hope he frames the address around the kind of president he thinks should replace him and where the country should go from here.
Bernie Sanders is the only candidate qualified to be President of the United State. He has essentially framed the issues for the Democratic Presidential race. On Tuesday, President Obama should follow Senator Sanders’ lead and explain Sanders’ ideas, as only he can do, in his own unique explanatory way.
© Copyright Horatio Green 2016