Thoughts on the Night Out for President Obama’s State of Union address:

At one point, I began to feel a tinge of sympathy for John Boehner, who dead-panned and occasionally pumped his lips as Obama spoke. His pathetic attempts at ceremonial courtesies gave new meaning to the sound of one hand clapping. Had to be painful for him as Obama rolled out one economic surge after another. Hadn’t the diehards warned us that a second Obama term would guarantee an economic disaster, soaring unemployment and $6 a gallon gas? It would have been better for everyone concerned if Boehner had shown up with outsize horn- rim glasses and a big handlebar mustache to conceal his discomfort. Mr. Speaker, get over it.

What in the world were these Republicans thinking about when they recruited Joni Ernst, their new senator from Iowa to respond to the President after a couple of trainwrecks with Marco Rubio and Bobby Jindal? Her brief sugary performance mostly echoed what Obama had already said about helping folks down the line from the wealthy. But now she wanted you to know that it was her party that was leading the nation from the depths of hell. The best I can do, people, is to give her the Shirley Temple Award for guiding us to the Good Ship Lollipop.

Unsurprisingly, there were three absentees by Supremes – Scalia,who was lately dubbed in a survey as the most sarcastic guy on the bench; Alito, who was once caught on camera shaking his head and saying “Not true” in a previous SOTU Address; and Thomas, the all-time sphinx who is paid for having people watch his unmoving lips. (How could he oppose affirmative action for others when that was his meal ticket to the Supremes?)

If the Republicans in the chamber were squirmy with the Obama roll-out, they had to feel more unloved by overnight polls that gave his speech somewhat-to-very positive approval of 81 pct, and only 18 pct. disapproval. Still, they stood shoulder to shoulder to denounce his mortifying words as “too partisan’ and unwilling to compromise. That sounded a lot like Khrushchev’s bargaining position: “What’s mine is mine, what’s yours is negotiable.”

Some observers thought it would have helped the Dems if Obama had said those things in the states where they were candidates. But he did try to help and was told by some of the candidates to keep out. They lost anyway. Try Alison Lundgren Grimes, the pro-coal anti-EPA candidate against Mitch McConnell. She not only slammed Obama but would not say whether she had ever-ever voted for him. Good riddance!

Finally, the big punch line from the speech that will be in the history books occurred when Obama said that he wasn’t running for election again, drawing sneers and sarcastic applause from R’s. He quickly went off the page and tartly told them: “I know because I won both of them”. Well, they couldn’t argue with that. But they will find a way.


Reposted from Grumpy Abe