After election victory, Obama hearts Romney in SOTU
February 12th, 2013
11:31 PM ET
5 years 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. Al-NY,NY

    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.

    buh bye. Can I come over and help you pack? I'm sure some others here will join in to see you leave. Take others with you PLEASE

    February 13, 2013 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  2. rrmuse

    Reply To Wilson's 9:54am post, so you think slavery was a good state right and Obama attempt to stop slave wages or lifestyle for hard workers is a bad, because it sure sounds like it.

    Just a side note Pres. Lincoln did preserve the union and that's why it's called the United States of America, instead of North Amercia being splited into Northern States of America and Southern States of America.

    February 13, 2013 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  3. griff-griff

    That is what I love about this president. He always has a plan. He does not waste his words. They have purpose. He basically pointed out that the Republicans came up with the idea first and pushed it in their 2012 agenda. When he proposes it, all of a sudden it is a bad idea. That party had better get a grip and do some changing or 2016 will be another landslide for the Democrats. Heck, 2014 might be one too. They are now trying to change the Voting Rights Act to suppress votes. When "W" won by 3 electoral votes but lost the popular vote to Al Gore, according to the Republicans, the electoral college was the best thing since sliced bread. Now that they've lost two landslide elections, they want to revamp the electoral college. One thing I have to give to them; they never quit trying..

    February 13, 2013 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  4. Jack


    I'll help you pack also, I am a conservative and you are acting like a bigot, we don't need you! And our gain will be Canada's loss

    February 13, 2013 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  5. M-W-T

    I'll help you pack also.....hell, ....I'll even pay for your gas

    February 13, 2013 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  6. JOE B

    Would like to see both parties working together and the facade they put forth before the American public that they are bitter enemies to be ended once and for all. I know the "enemy thing plays well for FOX news along with Hannity and Limbaugh fans but that's not how things need to be. Good move by Obama to extend an olive branch to Republicans.

    February 13, 2013 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  7. Free1

    Watching the SOTU was disappointing. Name one achievement he's accomplished without destroying America and what it stands for. I'm voting for Dr. Ben Carson if he runs. At least he has a strategy and can lead.

    February 13, 2013 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  8. Gabe

    "Extremely unique"... which is ever so different from "unique."

    February 13, 2013 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  9. Anonymous

    No we will not help him pack, he is are American brother and we are on the verge of a new day in this country, why do u think the enemy is trying so hard to divide us. Washington has always been corrupt, b 4 ob, and will be after ob, it's up to us, the people. While where busy fighting each other over fake issues are gov. Does whatever it wants, we have to share a common vision we all can agree on and fight for that as one first, then the stage will be set to work on the issues we disagree on civilly. It up to us

    February 13, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  10. tarura

    He run out of ideas and of excuses. Now he steals GOP ideas. No more excuses. He's toast. No deal.

    February 13, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. Rudy NYC

    There should be a law that says that if a state has no income tax, then they cannot take in more federal dollars than what they pay in federal taxes.

    February 13, 2013 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  12. litman

    You're moving to Canada to lower your taxes? Haven't done much research, have you? I moved to California from Canada 8 years ago, and pay virtually the same taxes now as then (and I've been lucky enough to stay in the highest tax bracket). The difference is that in Canada my family had free national healthcare, and good public schools.
    America is lucky to have a man as intelligent and forward-thinking as Obama leading them at this critical time. It's time for the GOP to come to grips with the fact that they lost the election, and are way out-of-step with the American people.

    February 13, 2013 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  13. Don't come here!

    It's always annoying when some (small minority) Americans say that they want to refuge up here to Canada (joke or not). This is because it shows their IGNORANCE of our country, its politics and lifestyles. Everything that you don't want to happen to your country has happened years ago here. You know, no guns, gay marriage, secularism, 'socialist' healthcare, liberalism, evil science in every public school and on and on.
    The real reason that you want to come here is because Canadians don't HATE each other on the extreme level as you do. Your patriotism is what keep you from all out war with one another. Now you are burning out and want free healthcare to lick your wounds in a gun free neighborhood.

    February 13, 2013 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  14. petemg

    Obama is posing again for the camera and the voters. This is pathetically all show and nothing more.

    February 13, 2013 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  15. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    I bet Romnesia will deny ever making such a proposal. O' and by the way, I'm still waiting for my gift from the President for voting for him. My perfect gift would be to have all teapublicans deported to southern Siberia where they can see Russia from some troll's bathroom window. Heehaw moosie gal.

    February 13, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  16. lcleejr

    almost forgot, republican politicians have hated romney for years republican voters liked romney better than all the rest of course republican politicians hate president obama more maybe romney can do something to help, the rest of the republican party is worthless they have no desire to see our country move forward

    February 13, 2013 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. Veteran Expat

    Move to Canada to avoid taxes? People should know that income tax is up around 40% and sales tax is around 17% here. Is still a great place to live and worth it. Conservatives would hate it hear as the torries don't push a religous agenda.

    February 13, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  18. BobPitt

    At Al-NY,NY.

    Stay over there. We don’t want you up here. Plus Canada has socialized medicine higher taxes, more regulation, and no second amendment; we also consider healthcare a right, and gun ownership as a privilege.
    No you won’t like it over here..!!

    February 13, 2013 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  19. Sly

    Our President reached out to Congress, and challenged them to get something done.

    It is put up or shut up time for Congress. The American people fully support our President, and almost no one supports the Republican obstructionist Congress.

    Great speech ... common sense. President Obama is one of the most down-to-earth and intelligent President we've ever had.

    February 13, 2013 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  20. Rudy NYC

    Has anyone else noticed that the vast majority of right wing attacks against Pres. Obama, and the left as a whole, have become increasingly personal in nature, lacking any political substance much less facts? I see it as a sign of their being unable to accept the terribly bitter defeat that they incurred in 2012.

    February 13, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  21. virginia

    OBAMA don't do to much good cause people won't be able to bear the payback for it...just don't do nothing more then to keep your gains this coming term...there is a reason why people don't like changed and fear it- that's cause the payback sometimes is to high to bear....I get the feeling you are an honest man but if i am mistaken then doing to much just he same isn't what is need it this time around let at rest while the rest recover...

    February 13, 2013 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  22. Wake up People!

    I totally agree with you Rudy. And this from the same people that claimed people were launching personal attacks against Queen Ann-toinette, simply for pointing out the FACT that she has NEVER worked outside the home in her ENTIRE life, so how in the world can she relate to those of us that have and do?

    But that's the GOP way. Accuse the other guy of the very thing you yourself are guilty of. Where I come from that's called "flipping the script".

    February 13, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  23. sheppard

    @Al-NY,NY – I hope your promise means more than the promise we got from that draft-dodger nugent. (I'll be dead or in jail if Obama gets re-elected) – Is your car packed? Do you need any help? How soon will you be hitting the road? This also means no visits back, right? You are leaving for good? Thank you.

    February 13, 2013 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  24. jpmichigan

    Another non-partisan commission to nowhere. Obama appoints them, they do the work and then he takes their suggestions and shoves it under the carpet never to be seen or heard of again. Remember Simpson/Bowles!

    February 13, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  25. UDidntBuildThat

    Sly-Our President reached out to Congress, and challenged them to get something done.
    good to know that it is not the President's job to get something done but Congress. Gee I guess that is why we elected him to lead. thanks for clearing that up.
    As for the personal attacks on Obama, I guess some here have selective memory of the very personal vile attacks on GWB. You all like to justify Obama's actions by referring to GWB when it suits u, even though u claimed to have voted for "CHANGE".
    When u step back and look at Obama's policies over the last four years, it has done nothing to help the poor and middle class. It has hurt them the most. While Obama accuse Repubs of being for the rich, it is the rich that has prospered the most under this Obama Admin. Just check Wall Street, to see how Buffet and all Obama's rich friends are doing. Obama is classic say one thing and do another. U low infomration voters are too stupid to see it! I guess trickle down govt. handouts is better than trickle down economics? Well let's ask Greece how that worked out for them.

    February 13, 2013 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
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