I talked to my mother last night, a long-time Democrat who voted for Obama this November.
She said that she had tuned out the State of the Union address to pour a class of wine, because it was more of the “same, nasty rhetoric” she heard during the Inauguration Day speech.
However, the real meat of the delivery may not have been in Obama’s words anyway. Breitbart’s Joel B. Pollak reports that Obama has created a whole new campaign team to support his second term policies.
As President Barack Obama delivered the State of the Union address, activists involved in his new non-profit advocacy group, Organizing for Action, gathered in local meetings around the country to watch and cheer him on. The new 501(c)4 organization, which is an offshoot of his re-election campaign, aims to support the president’s policies and to project the power of the White House beyond Washington into local communities and media.
I joined a gathering in southern California, which rented out a local pub and tuned in on the big screen. The buildup to the event was almost as interesting as the event itself. I received several email invitations to join a State of the Union-watching party; once I had accepted, I received two confirmation emails with detailed directions, plus a personal phone call the day before the address just to make sure I knew where to find the event.
Those, like my mother, hoping for sensible compromise will be in for a disappointment. It seems that the organization plans to operate under the classic rules that govern progressive “civility” and “tolerance”.
We all settled down at the bar or around tables to watch the event. Loud applause broke out for President Obama when he entered the chamber, and at several times during the speech itself. The group was particularly pleased by lines about climate change and on immigration reform, though the clapping stopped when the president spoke of “going to the back of the line behind the folks trying to come here legally,” a conservative theme.
There were a few boos, particularly when Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) appeared onscreen, or when Speaker of the House John Boehner failed to react positively to something the president had said.
Strap yourselves in: It looks like we are in for four years of hard core campaigning! My mom is going to need a lot more wine.