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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Comparisons: Barack Obama's SOTU Address and Bob McDonnell's Response

You can read the full text of both Barack Obama's and Bob McDonnell's speeches yesterday at the Huffington Post here and here, respectively. Below are small excerpts from each speech side by side on four different issues where there seems to be some clash of opinion.

I wasn't at all happy with either speech, and will post at least Mr. Obama's (and maybe Mr. McDonnell's too) speech with my own commentary line by line sometime very soon. On the areas of disagreement highlighted below however, I tend to prefer Mr. McDonnell's words to those of Mr. Obama's:

The Economy

President Obama: "Now, the true engine of job creation in this country will always be America's businesses. (Applause.) But government can create the conditions necessary for businesses to expand and hire more workers."

Governor McDonnell: "Good government policy should spur economic growth, and strengthen the private sector's ability to create new jobs. We must enact policies that promote entrepreneurship and innovation, so America can better compete with the world. What government should not do is pile on more taxation, regulation, and litigation that kill jobs and hurt the middle class."


President Obama: "Starting in 2011, we are prepared to freeze government spending for three years. (Applause.) Spending related to our national security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security will not be affected. But all other discretionary government programs will. Like any cash-strapped family, we will work within a budget to invest in what we need and sacrifice what we don't. And if I have to enforce this discipline by veto, I will."

Governor McDonnell: "The amount of this debt is on pace to double in five years, and triple in ten. The federal debt is already over $100,000 per household. This is simply unsustainable. The President's partial freeze on discretionary spending is a laudable step, but a small one. The circumstances of our time demand that we reconsider and restore the proper, limited role of government at every level."

Health Care Reform

President Obama: "Here's what I ask of Congress, though: Do not walk away from reform. Not now. Not when we are so close. Let us find a way to come together and finish the job for the American people."

Governor McDonnell: "All Americans agree, we need a health care system that is affordable, accessible, and high quality. But most Americans do not want to turn over the best medical care system in the world to the federal government."

President Obama: "But even if you doubt the evidence, providing incentives for energy efficiency and clean energy are the right thing to do for our future - because the nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy. And America must be that nation."

Governor McDonnell: "We are blessed here in America with vast natural resources, and we must use them all... But this Administration's policies are delaying offshore production, hindering nuclear energy expansion, and seeking to impose job-killing cap and trade energy taxes."


  1. Obama also said:

    "I know that there are those who disagree with the overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change."


    "We have gone from a bystander to a leader in the fight against climate change."

  2. I thought Bob McDonnell's speech was good. I hated President Obama's speech, especially since he attacked free speech and seems like he is going to go beyond his powers as president to limit corporations free speech just becuase it won't benefit him and the Democrats. Should we not allow groups of people like unions to show political support during campaigns? I believe that everyone should have a right to free speech and not just certain groups.

  3. Agreed! I've never seen so many self-proclaimed "liberals" go around and trash the first amendment so eagerly.