How would you grade President Obama’s 2015 State of the Union address?TRENTON — What grade would you give to President Obama’s sixth State of the Union address?
Weeks after Republicans took over control of Congress, the two-term Democratic president used Tuesday night’s speech to call for a number of Democratic proposals, including tax increases on the wealthy and education and child care help for the middle class.
“Will we accept an economy where only a few of us do spectacularly well?” Obama asked. “Or will we commit ourselves to an economy that generates rising incomes and chances for everyone who makes the effort?”
He also painted a picture of the country’s economy emerging from the “shadow of crisis” and vowed to veto any efforts by Republicans to dismantle health care and financial reform laws he trumpeted. But he ended the address by asking the two parties — who have been gridlocked for most of Obama’s tenure — to find common ground and “debate without demonizing one another.”
Response from New Jersey’s congressional delegation was split along party lines. U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) said Obama “aid out a bold vision to build on the progress we’ve made to grow our economy, expand opportunity and make sure the American resurgence doesn’t just benefit the select few, but all Americans.”
On the other end, Republicans said even though voters elected the GOP to take over Congress, Obama doesn’t seem keen to compromise.
“It is clear that cooperation is not on President Obama’s agenda for his final two years,” U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2nd Dist.) said.
What did you think of the speech? Vote in the informal, unscientific poll above.
Here is what some NJ.com users had to say about the address:
“Can anyone remember what he said last year ? … in 2 months will we even reference this speech ?”
“If I were GOP, I’d be upset: Obama has been cleaning the GOP clock for 6 years.”
“he has presence, and that’s about all. dems liked it and reps didn’t, but all Americans know it was bull.”
“Like it or not (and I don’t like some of the things Obama proposed), Obama laid out a list of things he’d like. Since Republicans now control both houses, it’s up to them to lay out their list.
I’m looking forward to hearing specifics about the Republican agenda — other than the Keystone Pipeline that seems to be the only thing they consistently bring up. I’m ok with allowing the Canadian pipeline to be built across US land, but pretending that it will create more than a handful of permanent US jobs is silly, and I don’t understand why Republicans object to a stipulation that the oil companies be responsible for cleaning up any leaks. At least protect the interests of the US!”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.