My first attempt at liveblogging - State Of The Union
Update on 2/1:
I was very impressed with the President's speech last night. He listed the positive accomplishments in the Middle East, while emphasizing that the decision to bring the troops home would NOT be made by politicians in D.C. I also liked how he mentioned North Korea, Syria etc. as places where freedom is not a blessing. The tough talk on Iran and Hamas was very good - and needed. I liked the word "regime". Not a word used lightly, but he said it at least twice.
The senseless defending of the border policy was irritating. He sounded like a Democrat on that one. No, our nation doesn't need illegal immigrant labor. Grrrr...
I really liked how he mentioned teaching responsibility and abstinence along with other efforts to stop HIV/AIDS and unwanted teen pregnancy & abortion. Mentioning the accomplishments made in America's youth was impressive - but he seemed to be pushing for more federal funding and/or programs at times - not the best thing, especially for a Republican.
"Congress must put aside partisan politics." Good, but unrealistic. Working with Democrats won't do - they couldn't even put aside partisan politics for the address.
Recognizing Judge Roberts and Alito - I liked that. Shows another accomplishment without really showing it.
"Make dependance on Middle East oil a thing of the past." Good, but alternative fuel sources seem far-off and unrealistic. Finding other places to drill needs to also be on the table, because - face it - Americans won't all be driving fuel-cell cars tomorrow.
The part about stem-cell research was VERY good. I like that he came out strong on that issue - some would have been afraid to.
Medical Liability reform: Yes, very good on that, too. Tell what he wants, tell why he wants it, tell when he wants it. Direct and well-argued.
Speech ends. "May God Bless America."
Speaking about HIV/AIDS research and prevention programs.
About Stem-Cell research: "Human life is a gift from our Creator, and that gift should never be... Discarded, or put up for sale."
Recognizes Justices Roberts and Alito. "I thank the Senate for confirming both of them... I will continue to nominate judges who understand that judges are servants of the law, and not legislate from the bench." Recognizes Sandra Day O'Connor.
Speaking about accomplishments in America's youth.
Proposing the 'American Competitiveness Initiative'.
"America is addicted to oil."
He's speaking about alternative fuel sources.
"...Make our dependence on Middle Eastern oil a thing of the past..."
"I ask the congress to pass medical liability reform this year."
Spinning the atrocious border policy. Grrr..
Has been speaking about social security, welfare reform, "Congress must put aside partisan politics."
"I ask you to reauthorize the Patriot Act..."
NSA program: "Based on the authority given to me by the Constitution," "Previous presidents have used the same constitutional authority I did...
"If there are people inside our country talking to Al Quaida, we will not sit back and wait to be hit again."
Iran: "A nation now held hostage by a small, clerical regime... The nations of the world must not permit the Iranian regime to gain nuclear weapons... America will continue to rally the world to recognize these threats."
Speaks of Palestinian elections. Hamas must "Recognize Israel, disarm, and work for lasting peace."
"Says the decisions to bring our troops home will be made by our military commanders, not "politicians in Washington DC. Second guessing is not a strategy."
"We're on the offensive in Iraq, with a clear plan for victory. First we're helping the Iraqis build an inclusive government..."
"America rejects the false comfort of isolationism..."
"If we leave these people alone, they will not leave us alone, they will simply move the battle to our own shores."
"We do not forget the other half. In places like Syria, Iran... North Korea... They seek to impose a heartless system of totalitarian control throughout the middle east, and arm themselves with weapons of mass murder."
Speaking about Iraqi voters, women voters, Lebanon....
"Far from being a hopeless dream, the advance of freedom is the story of our time."
"Every step toward freedom in the world makes our country safter, so we will act boldly..."
"Abroad our nation is committed to an historic, longtime goal, we seek the end of tyrrany in this world. Some may dismiss this goal..."
"The road of isolationism... May seem protecting and inviting."
"Tonight the state of our union is strong, and together we will make it stronger."
"... We have served America through one of the most consecequential periods of American history. And it has been my honor to serve you."
Some good(rough) quotes:
Starts by memorializing Coretta Scott Key. Long applause.
"Mr. Speaker: The President of the United States!" Standing ovation. I hear some boos, though not many.
Charlie Gibson announces: Cindy Sheehan has just been arrested! Apparently, she was trying to bring in some sort of banner to her front-row seat.
Politicians filing in to their seats. I'm about to scream because I'm being forced to listen to (AARGH!) Elizabeth Vargas opine about this being "a tough year for him[Bush]" and "undoubtedly, the worst". Grrr...