After election victory, Obama hearts Romney in SOTU
February 12th, 2013
11:31 PM ET
1 year ago

After election victory, Obama hearts Romney in SOTU

Washington (CNN) – At two distinct points during Tuesday's State of the Union address, President Barack Obama mentioned his 2012 presidential opponent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

When Obama announced "a non-partisan commission to improve the voting experience in America," the president said he would appoint a top attorney from his campaign as well as one from "Governor Romney's campaign."

Earlier in the speech, when Obama supported pegging the minimum wage to the cost of living, the president noted that Romney supported the change.

"Here's an idea that Governor Romney and I actually agreed on last year: let's tie the minimum wage to the cost of living, so that it finally becomes a wage you can live on," Obama said.

A president mentioning the man he recently defeated in a State of the Union address is extremely unique.

Obama didn't mention Republican Sen. John McCain in his 2009 State of the Union address – a speech given just a few months after handily defeating him at the ballot box.

In 2005, after President George W. Bush defeated Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, the president never mentioned Kerry by name. The trend held in 2001, too. After defeating former Vice President Al Gore, Bush never mentioned the man he defeated.

In 1997, after defeating Sen. Bob Dole in the 1996 election, President Bill Clinton didn't mention his opponent either.

Clinton did, however, mention Dole in his 1996 State of the Union.

"We owe thanks especially to our veterans of World War II," Clinton said. "I would like to say to Senator Bob Dole and to all others in this Chamber who fought in World War II, and to all others on both sides of the aisle who have fought bravely in all our conflicts since: I salute your service, and so do the American people."

The reason Obama chose to mention Romney, according to Maria Cardona, a Democratic strategist and CNN contributor, is more for the American people and less for the members of Congress in attendance.

"The reason he is mentioning Romney now is to continues to bolster his case to the American people that was he is proposing are not left, socialist programs, that they are actually programs that have historically been supported and advocated by Republicans, including his opponent in the last election, Mitt Romney," Cardona said after the speech.

While, according to Cardona, Romney doesn't have much clout with Republicans in the House and Senate, he does have a lot of name recognition among American voters.

"It is aimed at the American people, in order to continue to make the case to the American people that he is trying," Cardona concluded.


Filed under: Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (113 Responses)
  1. North Dallas Don

    It doesn't matter what Obama proposes. If Obama were to publicly state his support for oxygen, the Republicans would suffocate themselves.

    February 13, 2013 02:12 am at 2:12 am |
  2. Dirk

    Boring article.

    February 13, 2013 05:10 am at 5:10 am |
  3. Gurgyl

    Greatness of this dude. Ok.

    February 13, 2013 05:14 am at 5:14 am |
  4. DENNA

    President Obama continues to try to reach across to the GOP. Maybe the GOP should take a reality check and realize that they must work with him if THEY are survive. The American public has spoken and we are not kidding. The majority of us want them to work with the President. So go ahead and ignore us if you will. In 2014 we will reinforce the message.

    February 13, 2013 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  5. Thank God He Can't Run Again

    Wake me up in 2016–hopefully we'll have someone who can actually do something then.

    February 13, 2013 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  6. Andrea

    Tying minimum wage to the cost of living might have been Romney's idea but that doesn't make it right, it doesn't make it a good choice.

    February 13, 2013 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  7. Rudy NYC

    from the articles:

    "Earlier in the speech, when Obama supported pegging the minimum wage to the cost of living, the president noted that Romney supported the change."

    "On Tuesday night Republican Rep. Paul Ryan took issue with President Barack Obama's proposal to increase the minimum wage arguing it will hurt, not help, the working poor."
    -------------------------------–
    It is beginning to alomst sound like Paul Ryan has either learned how to do the Flip-Flop from Mitt Romney, or his run of Romney/Ryan campaign speeches were a complete sham.

    February 13, 2013 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  8. Washington Is Out Of Touch with reality

    the state of the union did it for me, its time to turn in your citizenship and move to Canada, because obama is going to tax us to death.

    February 13, 2013 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  9. plain&simple

    Everything needs to be directed at the American people. That's the proper focus. Republicans should recognize this

    February 13, 2013 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  10. Jay

    It would be best if Obama can convince Romney to be his chief economic adviser.

    February 13, 2013 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  11. NewMexico720

    Doesn't matter who the President mentions or what he says. Everyone in the chamber were nothing but a bunch of childish and immature people. Standing up, sitting down, clapping like puppets. Or sitting with stupid frowns on their faces and not giving due appreciation when deserved. Most sit like stiff logs glaring at the President because he doesn't support their own ridiculous agendas.

    February 13, 2013 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  12. JD

    Great Job Mr. President!

    February 13, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  13. guest

    Dan, please look up "unique" in the dictionary. I think you meant "rare." One of the two following statements is incorrect:

    "A president mentioning the man he recently defeated in a State of the Union address is extremely unique."

    "Clinton did, however, mention Dole in his 1996 State of the Union."

    February 13, 2013 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  14. Wake up People!

    How was that hearting Romney??? And this is trending??? Must be a very slow news day. First Rubio needing a drink of water and now this?? Who writes these stories? Two year olds??

    February 13, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  15. Janet

    Great SOTU address. I continue to admire and respect this man. As for those whining about moving to Canada – head north, people, you'll love it (you do realize that they have universal health care, right?) and my apologies in advance to our friends in Canada – you don't deserve these clods!

    February 13, 2013 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  16. Ancient Texan

    The raising of the minimum wage would be appreciated by the workers that could keep their job. But in this economy, small businesses would have to let some workers go and the unemployment numbers would grow.

    February 13, 2013 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  17. gijames1225

    If either of these men were actually bipartisan (or cared about letting people have their own way and decide for themselves) then they would have campaigned on shrinking federal government and leaving financial and lifestyle choices up to the states and individuals.

    February 13, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  18. luke,az

    President Obama is truly a remarkable leader. The greatest leader since Abraham Lincoln.

    February 13, 2013 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  19. Yeah uh huh

    And this will really matter...

    February 13, 2013 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  20. Rudy NYC

    plain&simple wrote:

    Everything needs to be directed at the American people. That's the proper focus. Republicans should recognize this
    ----------------------------------–
    I suspect Republicans might know that already. After they have been the messaging gurus for decades. I think the problem is that their message has turned to one of personal attacks, hate, and vitriol. While that sort of tack in their sails may excite their ever growing, and more extreme base, it is something that sucks the wind out of independents and moderates.

    February 13, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  21. rrmuse

    The GOP/REPUBLICANS will try to get control back in 2016 by DECLARING WAR ON DEMOCRACY WITH the move to get farther away from the popular vote by USING CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICTS VOTES to give electoral votes to candidates. If we had used congressional districts votes instead of the popular vote to give electoral votes to the candidates in 2012, Mitt Romney would be our president now. LET’S NOT WAIT UNTIL 2016 TO FIGHT FOR THE STRENGTH OF OUR VOTE.

    February 13, 2013 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  22. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    A president mentioning the man he recently defeated in a State of the Union address is extremely unique.
    -------------------------------------------------
    It is an extremely RARE occurrence, and the President is very UNIQUE in so doing.
    Congratulations Mr. President. Excellent address. Great conference call afterwards to the people who are REALLY going to help you get things done: us, the voters.
    Best President in generations.

    February 13, 2013 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  23. Wilson

    I hope everyone enjoys the actual costs to live, i.e. gas, food, heating, cooling etc, growing higher even quicker.

    February 13, 2013 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  24. Wilson

    @luke,az

    President Obama is truly a remarkable leader. The greatest leader since Abraham Lincoln.
    --------------------------------------
    I think you need to do a little research on mr. lincoln. He was not a very nice man. I would suggest starting with the book, "the real Abraham Lincoln," then follow that up with some research verifying what the book says. Lincoln started the civil war to centralize the government (taking away states rights) and, in his mind "to preserve the union." Well, maybe you are right, obama might be like lincoln. Obama is not a very nice man either, and has done more to create class/race/civil war than any president since lincoln.

    February 13, 2013 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  25. BADGUY

    It's "high time" the federal government sets a minimum wage for ALL the country to eliminate employers running to low wage states to avoid paying workers a "living wage". We should put in similar safeguards (tariffs, "fair trade" rules, etc), to keep those same employers from running to low wage countries overseas. Low wages force employees onto food stamp and welfare roles. The employers to USE those workers to make their millions, should be required to PAY those workers a "subsistence" wage. The American tax payers are TIRED of "making up the difference" so Millionaires can make more millions.

    February 13, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
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