Overheard: His Best?
HOH received a bipartisan ‘yes’ and positive thoughts from lawmakers when asked if Tuesday night was President Barack Obama’s best State of the Union.
“I thought it was the best of the eight that he’s given. The basic appeal to American values was good, the reaching out to [Speaker Paul D. Ryan] on the poverty issue was good, the acknowledgment that we got a lot done together last year … those were good things. I was pleased that he mentioned cancer … disappointed that he didn’t acknowledge that Republicans have doubled the increase what he asked for [in the omnibus]. He’s kind of catching up with us there.”
–Rep Tom Cole, R-Okla. “Today was his best State of the Union, it was less political. It was an emotional moment when he declared a war on cancer; there is no member who hasn’t been affected by cancer.”
–Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich. “Today was very good, I think today was a good capstone. I think it was great that he had the opportunity to kind of broaden (his) vision, already transitioning from presidency to a statesman.”
–Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich. “It didn’t seem to have as many highs and lows, the explosion, as many roaring applause lines. But it seemed more powerful, it seemed the tone was different than some of the other ones. A more thoughtful, deeper, tone than some of the previous ones and not just getting that great punch line.”
–Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Fla. “In fairness to the president, I’ve given my share of state addresses, they weren’t State of the Unions but I did eight of ‘em. Thematically, they’re very, very awkward speeches. You know, your staff and team give you like this colloquial laundry list of all the things you need to cover but thematically, it really doesn’t fit. So I have a degree of empathy for the president whether in this State of the Union address, in the last one, and they are difficult.”
–Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C. , referring to his eight years as South Carolina’s governor.
Contact Gangitano at AlexGangitano@cqrollcall.com and follow her on Twitter at @alexgangitano.