Obamas Send Holiday Message to the Troops

Posted December 24, 2009 at 5:00pm

In his weekly radio address, President Barack Obama was joined by first lady Michelle Obama to offer Christmas greetings to the country and to U.S. troops.“Even in these tough times, there’s still so much to celebrate this Christmas,— the president said. “A message of peace and brotherhood that continues to inspire more than 2,000 years after Jesus’ birth. The love of family and friends. The bonds of community and country. And the character and courage of our men and women in uniform who are far from home for the holidays, away from their families, risking their lives to protect ours.—Addressing the troops directly, Obama said he has had “no greater honor— than serving as their commander in chief.“I’ve been awed by your selfless spirit, your eagerness to serve — at the Naval Academy and West Point,— he said. “I’ve been energized by your dedication to duty — from Baghdad to the Korean peninsula.—Michelle Obama said it has been “one of my greatest privileges is to visit with military families across the country.— She asked listeners and viewers to volunteer to assist military families stressed by deployments.California Rep. Duncan Hunter, a veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan before being elected in 2008, also used the Republicans’ weekly response to focus on the men and women of the armed forces serving overseas.“I know we all wish everyone could be home for the holidays, but this is not a time for sadness or regret,” Hunter said. “Thoughts of home remind us of why we serve: because we’re proud to be Americans, because we want to pass on to our children the blessings of liberty that we inherited from our forefathers, and because nothing matters more to us than protecting our homes and our families.”While Obama stayed away from partisan rhetoric in delivering his Christmas message, Hunter took the opportunity to rail against Democrats’ top legislative priorities. He acknowledged the difficult Christmas that many Americans are experiencing given the current high unemployment rate and said that Republicans have offered “common-sense solutions” to help those struggling and to create more jobs.“Republicans believe our top priority when it comes to the economy should be simple:  First, do no harm,” Hunter said. “So let’s resolve in the New Year to end misguided efforts to create new laws that will cost even more jobs, whether it’s the ‘cap and trade’ national energy tax, the government takeover of health care, ‘card check,’ or even more tax increases.”