Washington (CNN) - President Obama is planning to mention the Tucson shooting tragedy near the top of his State of the Union Address Tuesday in order to press members of Congress to "lower your tone and raise your sights" about the future, according to a senior administration official.
"I think the American people are screaming for that," said the senior administration official. "They want adult supervision."
Sticking with the unity theme, the senior official said Obama will also use the "shellacking" his party suffered in the November election - as well as the successes of the lame duck session of Congress in December - to say that if politicians are going to tackle the nation's huge challenges they will "need to do all of it together" in the months ahead.
The senior administration official added that Obama is planning a "very optimistic" tone with five big picture themes, rather than presenting a long list of policy proposals.
"It's very much a thematic, visionary speech," said the senior administration official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to speak more candidly ahead of Obama's address. "It's not a laundry list of, 'Now, here's my $2 billion plan ...' We tried to do a speech here that's a pathway to the future."
The senior official said Obama chose this type of speech because he realizes this is a strange "economic moment" for the American public right now because they see economic growth on the rise along with a burgeoning stock market, and yet unemployment is still stuck at 9.4 percent and there is deep anxiety about the future for many Americans.
"He wants to tell the story of where he thinks America is right now and where we go next," said the senior official.
The president's themes will all be focused on "winning the future," according to the senior official, by urging Congress to work with him on several key areas like innovation, education, and fiscal responsibility.
"Those are all the component parts, but to get all of that done we need to work together," the senior official said.
Have a great speech Mr. President!
Hope he doesn't actually say "raise your sights" in the context, seems to be a poor choice of words.
" President Obama is planning to mention the Tucson shooting tragedy near the top of his State of the Union Address Tuesday in order to press members of Congress to "lower your tone and raise your sights" about the future, according to a senior administration official."
That's because it got him a rating boost and will do so again. These are the charges against Bush when he was manipulating events, no reason they cannot be applied here either.
Wonderful. More "adult supervision" from the nanny state.
so..is this "senior official" saying we need "adult supervision" as if this country is a big childish playhouse? that comment is iinsulting to the people of the united states and should not have been said in that way. AND "lowering the tone" needs to go both ways.so far it is only applying to statements made AGAINST the administrations views yet hateful,demonizing rhetoric is still being used toward THOSE persons, and its considered justified... its NOT!
That's exactly why we need sombody other than this amatuer in office!!
It is inappropriate to grandstand the AZ tragedy. This is a State of the Union address not an election rally.
Makes me ill.
I'll lower my tone when there is less of a reason to speak out and decry the corruption which has infected the core of my great nation like a throbbing tumor.
That's my president!
"He wants to tell the story of where he thinks America is right now and where we go next," said the senior official. can he say broke and broker.
Absurd! The ghoul who rampaged Tucson couldn't discern a Democrat from a Republican from Paul Revere from today's calendar date.
Civility is the talking point of the day and is important but has NOTHING to do with Tucson.
Shamelessly milking out the Tucson tragedy for as much (politically) as he can get...what a surprise!
And he should NOT talk about guns tonight – it's about the Economy and Jobs!!! We shall see!!
Good Luck President Obama – We got your BACK!!!