(CNN) - Hard to believe that Republicans did not applaud when President Obama called for Wall Street fat cats to pay a fee to help reduce the deficit. Taxpayers bailed them out and now they're reaping record bonuses. That's bad politics and bad policy – not to mention bad morals.
(CNN) - It is stuff like this that makes conservatives and a growing number of independents worried about President Obama and his views.
He says, "Now, the true engine of job creation in this country will always be America's businesses. But government can create the conditions necessary for businesses to expand and hire more workers." But when he listed all the jobs the first stimulus helped, he said, "Because of the steps we took, there are about two million Americans working right now who would otherwise be unemployed. Two hundred thousand work in construction and clean energy. Three hundred thousand are teachers and other education workers. Tens of thousands are cops, firefighters, correctional officers, and first responders. And we are on track to add another one and a half million jobs to this total by the end of the year." In addition to a lot of people disputing the numbers, all the jobs he listed are either government jobs or jobs highly dependent on government. If American businesses are the "true engine[s] of job creation" why are all the jobs created that he touts born of government?
(CNN) - Always some good theater at these events. President Obama talks about the taxes he has CUT. No Republican stands to clap, and the president calls them out: "I thought I'd get some applause on that one."
(CNN) - The elusive bipartisan applause barrier was finally broken with the Calvin Coolidge-echoing line: "The true engine of job creation in this country will always be America's businesses."
(CNN) - It is striking that President Obama has just made strong assertions that the stimulus plan of last year has saved or created two million jobs and has been a great success. But a CNN poll that just came out of the field found that over half of all Americans oppose the stimulus plan and three quarters think huge amounts have been wasted. What is the disconnect here?
(CNN) - It took the president almost two pages to say the state of our union is strong - and he finally got applause. Seems a tad defensive, especially on the bank bailout.
(CNN) - At the opening of his speech, President Obama offered a line that echoed his first campaign commercial – saying that "we are one nation, one people."
(CNN) - There's been a lot of talk about populism this year, and there's no question that independent voters are angry about partisan politics as usual. But their anger is directed at special interests on the right and the left, big business and big government.
(CNN) - If this State of the Union speech is as long as we have been told - about 70 minutes - it means that the president could not decide what was important. So he decided everything was important. That's a shame because the American people suspect this president is trying to do everything and accomplishing nothing except spending money we don't have and creating debt.
What the president needs to do is focus on only a few things: Growing the economy, creating jobs, reducing debt, and keeping America safe.
This is not the night for a speech that is longer than train smoke.
(CNN) - President Obama has to start convincing Americans that what he has done (stimulus plan, bailouts) IS working, even if they don't feel it on Wall Street, ergo: "the worst of the storm has passed."