Analyzing and Reacting to President Obama's State of the Union

Thursday, January 28, 2010

President Obama delivered his State of the Union Wednesday evening addressing jobs, the economy, health care and more. For help analyzing his speech, we talk with former Clinton speechwriter Ted Widmer and our Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich.

Ted Widmer is currently the director of the John Carter Brown Library at Brown University.


Edward Widmer and Todd Zwillich

Produced by:

David J Fazekas

Comments [8]

Jonathan Hill

The state of the Union address is testament that America is moving in the right direction....we are becoming a whole country that loves one another and takes care of one another....with healthcare reform we are seeing the country become more empathetic to its citizens....with the inclusion of minorities in certain positions of power we are living up to the beliefs of our forefathers

Jan. 28 2010 10:37 PM
Stan Duncan from Quincy Point, MA

In this morning's show you had on Todd Zwillich to do a fact check on the President's State of the Union speech. However, for some reason, he never got around to doing any fact checking. Instead he responded to every question with analysis of why the President said this or that, or what audience he was trying to impress, never, so far as I can recall, checking a single fact.

In case you'd like to redo the segment so that we listeners could actually learn something ab out whether the President was factual or not or somewhere in between, I'd recommend (among others), from the Annenberg Public Policy Center.

They did a good piece on it today, which you can find at the following link.

Poor Todd. What was he thinking?

Jan. 28 2010 07:27 PM

The moment came early on, when the President first mentioned the middle-class tax relief, and he pointed out the sitting Republicans with a Jimmy Stewart off-hand ad lib. He suddenly became a charming voice of reason and they became a petulant bunch of Lionel Barrymores. To a group that counts on the uninformed as such a large part of its base, anyone who can so adroitly control the perspective suddenly became a very dangerous man. I expect nine more months of absolute gridlock because they know they can't afford to give him any victories at all.

Jan. 28 2010 10:02 AM
Trevelle Bibbs Jr


I believe that our president is consistent. Last night he thoroughly addressed all the issues that matter, with substance, sincerity and clarity. What I like about our president is that he has a clear vision and is focused. He is not afraid to lead and make unpopular decisions. He is clearly an optimist who does his job not for a paycheck but with purpose. I respect him very much for leading with no apologies. He stepped on alot of toes, but was honest. He invited the complainers to provide a better solution than what he has proposed and I agree. Some people disagree to be disagreeable or because they can not claim credit for the idea. We truly have an EGO driven system that impeds progress.

Jan. 28 2010 09:13 AM
robert chaffee from Detroit, Michigan

Detractors are already spinning the speech as blaming Bush. What is missing in this analysis is the obvious implication that the conservative policies of deregulation and spending cuts are still with us. It is not about what hapened. It is about realizing that those policies did not work. Will not work. Can not work. We can't go back there. Please say it again. We can't go back there.

Jan. 28 2010 08:13 AM
J Manderson from New Jersey

I am listening to eric cantor spin the state of the union speech. He alleges Obama's stimulus plan failed to keep employment below the 8% "promised". Where did this number come from, and was it ever stated when the stimulus bill was passed? I believe I also heard the number in other republican responses. This number of 8% smells like a bogus statistic about to get parroted enough in the press that we will all begin to accept its fiction as fact. A fact check might be in order.

Jan. 28 2010 07:50 AM
Ragnar Johnsen from Bergen/Norway

If we only have been just as critical after president Bush` first year, we wouldn`t be in this mess.

Ragnar Johnsen

Jan. 28 2010 07:08 AM
Omaar from Sandy Springs Georgia

Regarding Universal Health Care For All Americans..


"Turning now to the rest of the agenda for 1974, the time is at hand this year to bring comprehensive, high quality health care within the reach of every American. I shall propose a sweeping new program that will assure comprehensive health insurance protection to millions of Americans who cannot now obtain it or afford it, with vastly improved protection against catastrophic illnesses."

(Richard Nixon, January 30, 1974)

I'm Tired of Republican's Politically Convenient Amnesia.

Jan. 28 2010 07:07 AM

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