“Never in our lives again will we have the chance to do as much good as we do right now,” President Obama said in a preview video of his last State of the Union.
— Alex Wall (@Alex44) January 11, 2016
President Obama’s last State of the Union will air January 12th, Tuesday night, at 9 PM EST. It will be live streamed and available on Amazon video to view as well.
Pundits and opponents (almost the same thing at this point?) have long claimed Obama was a lame duck, but he has proven them all wrong. Repeatedly. From the historic Iran deal to the climate change deal to his willingness finally to take executive action to close loopholes in gun sales laws.
I don’t like to get ahead of reality, because a person can’t predict things even though there’s an entire political class built on just such a false notion. But seven years in, one thing has become abundantly clear – this President is on a moral mission. Not all people who run for the highest office of the land actually have an agenda to do good for the people, but it appears as though this President did and does.
Seven years in and we have had no actual scandal. We’ve had a lot of false accusations and some of those beliefs are held by the public at large, but they are false. In fact if there is any scandal in the Obama presidency, it is the public’s willingness to believe every lie told about him and his family, his opponents’ lack of respect for the office itself, and the pundits’ blindness to being fooled again (to be fair, a few of them were actually complicit in the lies) by the relentless lies they are fed. From the fake Benghazi email scam to the Obama isn’t a Christian and wasn’t born here to Obamacare will ruin this president theme — wrong, wrong, wrong.
While the noise makers were littering our streets with lies, this President – while an imperfect man who admits to having a rather large amount of pride – has been busy getting things done. He has protected the poor and the middle class as best as he could from the wolves in the Republican party, though it took him a few years to figure out they weren’t going to play fair. He has grown into new positions regarding marriage equality while advancing civil rights for all forward. He has tried to close Gitmo throughout his presidency only to have the funding rejected by Congress.
Obama has kept a vigilant eye out for our troops with jobs bills and expanded treatment plans. He has reduced veteran homelessness as he promised in 2009. First Lady Michelle Obama and Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden have spent more time with the families of our troops through their Joint Forces venture than any previous administration.
The president has set historic records for consecutive private sector job growth with 14.1 million private-sector jobs added in 70 months and the economy under him has boomed. Unemployment is at its lowest point in seven years, which is to say we are reaching the recovery point from the Great Bush Recession of 2007.
I have just scratched the surface here in terms of President Obama’s impact on every day Americans. The rate of uninsured people have plunged thanks to ObamaCare, and that’s huge as no developed nation should have people dying from lack of affordable healthcare.
What do all of these things have in common? They are all driven by a moral belief in caring for our neighbors – being, as the President has put it, “Our brother’s keeper.” President Obama has been a moral leader of the highest order, and I suspect that is what most disturbs his opponents, even though they haven’t identified their problem as such.
No, President Obama is not to blame for the divisiveness; the people to blame for the divisiveness are the people who have been lying about this President for the last seven years and the people so full of blind hate that they were willing to believe any lie. President Obama has looked out for all, no matter what side of the aisle and without petty grudges. He has held his hand out to assist red state governors who have disrespected him and his office. He has repeatedly talked about all of America not just blue America.
This President has been motivated by a higher calling to serve the people of this country. We can disagree with some of his choices, but there is no disputing among sane people that he has spent these seven years on a mission to help the vulnerable, while staying moored in reality and rooted by pragmatism.
It’s with deep sadness that I will watch the last President Obama State of the Union tomorrow evening. It’s a rare event to have a president like Obama. While others were hysterically chasing the latest manufactured scandal, I was watching as Obama shifted the policy paradigm, changing the lens through which we view policies.
The public has shifted with him, leaning slightly more to the left than they did before he took office. In this way, President Obama has been the Democratic Party’s Reagan. Others after him will hopefully build on what he started, but it wouldn’t have been possible without President Obama’s unique, moderate-seeming approach. President Obama’s moral mission has changed this country for the better.
President Obama has a year left, and I can’t wait to see what he’s doing to do with it.
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah has won two Telly Awards and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.