It felt something like a compromise, albeit a hollow one.
Wearing a blue necktie, President Bush kicked off the State of the Union Address by honoring Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat and the first female to hold the position. Later, he heartwarmingly honored several American heroes, one of whom even gave him a “thumbs up.”
Bush tactfully spoke as one trying to convince a tank full of sharks not to eat him. We can’t blame him – most of the men and women in that room were elected for the simple fact that they publicly disagree with him.
The president made some tall orders and announced some wide-sweeping plans, the implications of which could take years to sort out, for better or for worse. And, as was expected, he went at the heartstrings and guts of the American people with his Iraq War rhetoric.
In his speech, Bush made some shamefully erroneous implications and assumptions. He again lumped in al Qaeda with Saddam Hussein. In reality, Hussein’s regime and al Qaeda didn’t get along, much less work together.
He then hoisted the blame for the mess in Iraq on the Iraqi government that he helped craft, seemingly disturbed that a region that has never known democracy is rejecting it.
Further, his remarks on domestic policies seemed to either miss the mark or lack credibility – how many times have we heard his alternative energy speech?
Bush seems to be learning, but not quickly enough.