Friday, January 28, 2011

Obama's State of Union Address

US President Barack Obama's State of the Union Address delivered on 25 January can be viewed as his prelude to seek second term presidency in 2012. Obama has just completed the first half of his presidency. The second State of the Union Address is like a mirror that can reflect what Obama wants to do in the next two years. In this Address, Obama urged both the Democratic Party and Republican Party to work together in improving the US economy. While he wanted all politicians from the two parties to put the nation above politics, he also warned his political rivals not to pull one another's legs when the people of the United States are suffering from economic hardship. He said that if this was not observed, then both the parties could become losers at any one time.

In this second State of the Union Address, Obama did not waste too many times and words on US foreign policy. On the Middle East Peace process, which is a hot potato, Obama did not say a word. On international affairs, the praiseworthy words of Obama in his Address were none other than telling the people that the US military mission in Iraq would soon come to an end.

Revival of Economy
The pace of the US economic recovery has been slow. The US unemployment rate remains as high as above nine percent. The high US federal deficit that cannot go down has led to continual expansion of federal debt.
The reason why the Democratic Party led by Obama could lose out in last year's congressional elections was the Democratic Party has failed to ease the people's concern about the worsening economic situation in the country. If Obama wants to pave a smooth path to run for the next presidential election, then he has no other choice but to focus on domestic economic issues.

Health Care Reform Bill
During the presidential election campaign held two years ago, Obama has made the commitment to promote the sharing of power between the ruling Democratic and the opposition Republic party. Unfortunately, Obama's health care reform bill has divided the two political parties as fire and ice. Not too long after the Republican Party regained control of the House of Representative after the 2010 congressional election, the Republicans have already proposed the abolishment of Obama's health care reform bill.
The remarks addressed to the Republicans by Obama in his latest State of the Union Address have carried with it a special message. He said that when all sectors in the society made evaluation on him and on other congressional representatives, their evaluation "will be determined not by whether we can sit together tonight, but whether we can work together tomorrow." Although these remarks by Obama have won applause from the whole floor, we believe while the superficial applause coming from the Democratic and Republican congressional representatives were as loud as each party could release, but the deep feelings between the two political camps were different.

The gunshot tragedy in Tucson, Arizona, shocked both the ruling and opposition parties. The poisonous atmosphere in the US political scene has raised red light. To the Republican politicians who have formed a strong force to prevent Obama from being re-elected as a second term President, they know that if they focus only on confronting and opposing the US President and the Democratic Party without considering the feeling of the people, the general public who gave them the votes during last year's congressional election might embrace the Democratic Party again in the next presidential election.

National Policy Implementation
In this regard, when President Obama urged both the parties to join hands and rescue the US economy, not only could he win the hearts of the middle and independent voters, he could also push the Republicans to a corner losing both their advancing and retreating ground. When Obama talked about his thrifty budget plan, he said "We will move forward together, or not at all." With such a statement, President Obama has warned the Republican congressional representatives that if the US Congress failed to achieve any federal budget reduction plan, the overall Congress will upset the people. In the end, no party could reap benefit or take advantage of each other.

From the contents of Obama's latest State of the Union Address; we can observe that in the next two years, President Obama will adopt a pragmatic policy based on concrete work and concrete fight in dealing with national issues. For example, in this round of State of the Union Address, Obama did not mention the legislation of the huge and massive health care plan but instead he has thrown out some proposals deemed pleasing to both the Democratic and Republican Party. This has shown Obama has not only reinforced his 'fundamental political base", he has also tried to absorb some of the Republican congressional representatives to his national policy implementation track to reduce and counter-attack strength of his political rivals.

Lack of Strength
However, before President Obama has released the full contents of his second State of the Union Address, some Republicans have already launched their counter attacks on his speech without any delay. They sent emails to the media criticizing the lack of strength of Obama's decision to freeze federal spending.
If we say this State of the Union Address released by President Obama has subtly drawn open the battlefield curtain of the next US presidential election. This is not an exaggerating conclusion.Overall, Obama's second State of the Union Address has promoted national unity. The Address has included both Obama's defense and attack strategy in dealing with his political rivals.

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