State Of The Union 2012: Obama Delivers Address (LIVE VIDEO & UPDATES)
President Barack Obama will deliver this year's State of the Union speech to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night.
HuffPost's Jen Bendery reports on what the president can be expected to say in his remarks:
Obama's third State of the Union address, which airs on all major networks at 9 p.m. EST, will map out a vision for boosting the economy and strengthening the middle class, based on four pillars, White House press secretary Jay Carney said in a Monday briefing. Those pillars are American manufacturing, American energy, skills for American workers, and American values. The president also will adopt a tone that ran all through a speech he gave in Kansas last month -- one that many are equating with a historic speech that Teddy Roosevelt gave in 1910 -- that carries a strong message about social and economic equality.
Check out the live blog below for the latest updates.
President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech on Tuesday night prompted an outpouring of reaction from both sides of the aisle in the political community.
Click here to view a slideshow of reactions from politicians to Obama's speech.
HuffPost's Ryan Grim reports:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Tuesday night he would support legislation to end insider trading among members of Congress and saw no reason why the bill couldn't become law this year.
President Barack Obama called on Congress during his State of the Union address to swiftly pass legislation barring legislators from investing in companies whose business is affected by matters before the two chambers.
"Well, I think people should have enough sense not to do it without legislation, but I will support legislation," Reid told a handful of reporters after the speech.
Click here to read more.
Mitt Romney gave his reaction to Obama's State of the Union address on NBC Tuesday night.
Romney told Brian Williams Obama had "basically adopted a lot of thoughts that we've had on the campaign trail." He also touched on his time campaigning in Florida, noting that "the idea that we are on the right track is something very foreign to people here."Romney took the opportunity to attack Obama for raising corporate tax rates, a claim that isn't exactly true.
"Well, in some respects I have to compliment the president on adopting a whole series of ideas that I've been speaking about for the last several years," Romney said. "If you want to get the economy going, lower corporate tax rates. He's raised them."
Romney also appeared on Fox News Tuesday night to discuss how he believes Obama views Americans.
"I just dont think he understands what's happening in American homes," Romney said. "I just sat down with a group of Floridians... they're not feeling like the policies of this president have made things better."
Romney said there was "no question" that Obama hasn't improved the country during his presidency. "This is a president with a gap between what he says and what he does so enormous, sometimes you just... shake your head in amazement."
Romney questioned what Obama did during the first two years of his presidency, when he had "all that power" of a Democratic majority in the House and Senate. He also blasted Obama for "weakening America militarily," weakening the economy and weakening the country's family values.
-- Paige Lavender
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) appeared on Fox News for the first time since suspending her presidential campaign and blasted President Obama's State of the Union Address as a "campaign kickoff."
According to Bachmann, she believes Obama primarily called for "amnesty for illegal aliens, more madness and benefits for illegal aliens, more government money for private business more government programs." There wasn't enough emphasis on job creation, she concluded.
Bachmann also talked about the GOP presidential race, saying she still has "no intention to endorse." Despite that, she said she keeps "in contact with the candidates on a regular basis" and claimed to have spoken with Romney, Santorum and Gingrich earlier in the day.
"I will be standing with our eventual nominee," Bachmann said. "You haven't heard the end of my voice on the campaign trail."
-- Nick Wing
Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum responded to Obama's State of the Union adddress, calling it "the kick-off of his re-election campaign" in a statement:
From beginning to end, the American people heard more of the same - empty promises and grand platitudes that will do nothing to help the millions of Americans who are unemployed or under employed find a good paying job.
Rather than call for decisive action in allowing projects like the Keystone Pipeline or reducing the regulatory burden his Administration has imposed, the President declared war on those who are most successful in our society. Barack Obama should realize he's the President of all Americans, but sadly, he has instead chosen to govern and campaign as the Divider-in-Chief.
We need to unite America and create an environment that rewards hard work and success, allowing people the opportunity to rise in society. We need a President who will rebuild the sector that built American economic greatness - manufacturing. My plan is diametrically opposed to that of the President's. Barack Obama speaks of raising taxes and imposing barriers to growth, my plan would eliminate the corporate taxes on manufacturers, eliminate the burdensome regulations of this Administration, and free our market to explore for the energy necessary to grow our economy.
Our Party needs to provide a clear contrast with Barack Obama in the general election. Our campaign does just that by focusing a positive message of a resurgent American manufacturing sector, an Administration that will believe in American exceptionalism again, and valuing the dignity of each and every human life. America deserves better than what they heard from Barack Obama tonight.
|@ NBCPolitics : Herman #Cain's Tea Party response to #SOTU: 'We heard more class warfare...president still wants to manipulate the tax code' #NBsotu|
HuffPost's Amanda Terkel reports:
Republicans don't think it's fair for President Barack Obama to accuse them of obstructing progress. But that's not going to stop them from blaming him for doing the same.
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) delivered the Republican response to Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday night, accusing the president of pushing an extreme agenda that was "pro-poverty." Picking up on many of the themes sounded by the GOP presidential candidates on the campaign trail, Daniels criticized Obama for calling on the wealthiest Americans to pay higher taxes, saying it was doing nothing but "divide" America and stifle economic growth.
Daniels pointed to Obama's "grand experiment in trickle-down government" that has "held back rather than sped economic recovery" and his record in putting America on a course to make the federal debt "radically worse in the years ahead."
Click here to read more.
|@ JoNBCNews : Cain on Obama: "Came across as a hodge podge of little ideas, no big ideas that will fundamentally change Washington"|
|@ ryanjreilly : Herman Cain getting ready for Tea Party Express #SOTU response. http://t.co/BxCCDjxH|
|@ wpjenna : Twitter reports that education was the most tweeted about topic during #SOTU, according to @msnbc.|
|@ SenatorReid : The policies proposed by #Obama will narrow the inequality gap, make America a leader in clean energy tech, & revive manufacturing #SOTU|
|@ HuffPostHill : Mitch Daniels is like Newt Gingrich before Newt Gingrich discovered yelling and complaining.|
HuffPost's Zach Carter and Loren Berlin report:
President Barack Obama vowed during Tuesday's State of the Union Address to establish a new Financial Crimes Unit dedicated to investigating and prosecuting "large-scale" financial fraud. By naming New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to the squad, Obama put enormous pressure on the outspoken Wall Street critic to join a foreclosure fraud settlement that Schneiderman has frequently rejected as overly acquiescent to the financial establishment.
As a political statement, Obama's announcement marks a change of rhetorical tone from an administration that has been reluctant to directly criticize Wall Street. But the Obama team's weak record on Wall Street fraud -- and the presence of two big-bank-friendly regulators on the panel with Schneiderman -- cast doubt on whether the new enterprise will be able to take serious action against the big banks instrumental in the 2008 meltdown.
Click here to read more.
|@ HuffPostHill : Waiting for Daniels to rip off his Mission Impossible mask to reveal his true identity.... BOBBY JINDAL.|
|@ mpoindc : Daniels: "When President Obama claims that the state of our union is anything but grave, he must know in his heart that this is not true"|
|@ AKaczynski1 : Denis Kuchinch shaking everyones hands as they walk out.|
The early award for the most cynical interpretation of Obama's SOTU address has to go to American Crossroads, the conservative group started by Karl Rove, which offered the following statement from president and CEO Steven Law.
Obama’s speech tonight hit four themes, all with campaign purposes – education because he’s terrified of losing the student vote, immigration because he’s terrified of losing the Hispanic vote, manufacturing because he’s trying to stem his losses among blue collar workers, and foreign policy because it’s the only place he can celebrate even modest success. Barack Obama made clear that he want Americans to ignore the last three years and double down on an agenda that has yet turn the economy around. This speech demonstrated that Barack Obama is ignoring his last three years of failure, and is hoping Americans will ignore it too.
-- Sam Stein
Before the raid that killed Osama bin Laden last May, the Pentagon didn't even acknowledge the existence of the specialized Navy SEAL unit that carried out the operation.
But since that event, just about everyone with a television has heard of Seal Team Six -- and a surprising amount of information about the raid itself has emerged in published accounts.
Tonight, President Obama took his involvement in describing details of the secret raid to a rare new level, personally mentioning several specific details of the raid: "The pilot who landed the helicopter that spun out of control; the translator who kept others from entering the compound; the troops who separated the women and children from the fight; the SEALs who charged up the stairs."
None of those details are new -- most of them appeared in a detailed account of the raid in the New Yorker in August, and others have been discussed at length by other members of his staff.
But until now, the closest the president himself has come to talking about the raid came in an interview on "60 Minutes" in May, when he focused on his own experience watching the raid unfold, and touched on its twists and turns obliquely.
When he first announced the killing of bin Laden, in a late night address to the nation, Obama simply referred to the special operators who conducted the raid as "a small team of Americans."
-- Joshua Hersh
HuffPost's Elise Foley reports:
When President Obama's immigration policy staffers gathered to help pen the State of the Union Address passage dedicated to their issue, they didn't have much to work with. Comprehensive immigration reform never came close, and the Dream Act failed. What's a speechwriter to do?
"I believe as strongly as ever that we should take on illegal immigration," Obama said in his Tuesday evening speech.
Indeed, he "strongly believe[d] that we should take on, once and for all, the issue of illegal immigration" last year, according to his State of the Union speech.
Click here to read more.
|@ HuffPostHill : Our favorite part of the speech was when President Obama asked everyone to vote for him.|
While a lesbian Air Force colonel was a guest of Michelle Obama's, President Obama didn't introduce her or tell her story.
He also did not bring attention to his greatest achievement to date on gay rights: the ending of Don't Ask, Don't Tell in September 2011. He did make a vague mention of it at the the end of the speech about an integrated military: "When you put on that uniform, it doesn’t matter if you’re black or white; Asian or Latino; conservative or liberal; rich or poor; gay or straight." But aside from that, there was no mention of progress or promises on LGBT rights.
The Human Rights Campaign, however, indicated that it was felt the issue had been sufficiently addressed. “The inclusion of our community in those laundry lists in any part of the speech helps us tremendously in being thought of as a vital part of the American fabric,” HRC's Fred Sainz told Politico.
-- Michelangelo Signorile
HuffPost's Dave Jamieson and Arthur Delaney report:
In a State of the Union speech focused tightly on jobs and the economy, President Barack Obama outlined his ideas for getting long-term unemployed workers back to work and closing the "skills gap" separating jobless Americans from employers who have positions to fill.
In a speech setting his presidential agenda for 2012 -- as well his burgeoning re-election campaign -- Obama put forth policies that he said would "restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot," calling for more job training for young or unemployed workers as well as reforms to the unemployment insurance system.
Click here to read more.
|@ howardfineman : "This nation is great because we built it together..." The pitch: we are in it together, the fairness theme writ large.|
|@ ryangrim : Obama's really taking his sweet time with this finish|
|@ LukeRussert : Scrum of reporters that await for Congress in Stat Hall #NBCSOTU http://t.co/ym6yjHh1|
|@ howardfineman : This is/was a very long speech, but overall a pretty good one, utilitarian and focused.|
|@ markknoller : Tonight, I’m proposing a Veterans Job Corps that will help our communities hire veterans as cops and firefighters.|