Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Washington Watch: "Obama (Gently) Smacks-Down Congress"

President Barack Obama delivers the State of the Union address in the House Chamber at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Jan. 28, 2014 (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Barack Obama delivered his 5th State of the Union (SOTU) address with a style and tone reminiscent of his early presidential campaign years. He spoke of unifying themes and appealed to our greatness as a nation. The Republicans seemed confused as to when to applaud and stand, and tellingly kept their seats even when the President spoke of popular issues such as salary fairness for women and accessible health care for all.  

Barack Obama, as only he can, spoke in generalities while still getting in the ‘digs’ to the other side. This was not a red-meat speech…nevertheless, it was a chastisement. A good orator can do this. They can tell you off without you even realizing you've been told off. 

Make no mistake...the President told off the GOP-led House during the SOTU; and he did it while smiling the whole time.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Washington Watch: "Obama, Where Are You?"

The new year in Washington promises more of the same gridlock and partisan politics that have dominated for many years. If the President thought his re-election would end the Republican stubbornness, and insistence on getting NOTHING done, he was wrong.

This year, we hear Republicans are ready to vote another 40 or more times on ending Obamacare.  They think this is a winner for them going into the 2014 elections. It will be if all of the people benefiting from Obamacare (and there are many), stay home. And don't forget all of the efforts to purge young people, people of color, and other Democratic-leaning voters from the rolls. No doubt this will continue (in-lieu of outreach), as America grows more diverse.

In 2014, it is doubtful the Democrats will retake the House. Hopefully, the Party can hold on to the seats they have and gain a few additional seats. We wonder if more moderate Republicans will capture seats from the far-right fringe that seems to want to hold the nation hostage with their 'anti-Obamanism.' Most believe the battle for the Senate will be brutal.

So what's coming from the Administration? Will we get better messaging from the President this year than in 2013?