I’m watching the speech on the Web and he is speaking with an intensity and passion I’ve never seen from him before; actually his urgency makes it easier to watch him, as he has mostly dropped the fake black preacher cadence he normally uses in every sentence which makes listening to him unbearable. The speech is all about targetted tax breaks and spending to encourage more hiring. It’s about rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure. But for him to propose these things, without making any reference to the much larger stimulus two and a half years ago that was supposed to rebuild America but just sent hundreds of billions down the tubes to favored but doomed businesses such as Solyndra, produces a sense of disbelief.
I don’t find the repetition of “pass this bill now” to be a problem. Rhetorically it works.
Various Republican opinion writers are so over the top in their denunciations of the speech that they sound unhinged; Jeffrey Kuhner in the Washington Times is an example (the Times is so crazy anti-Obama it even as a picture of Obama as Amy Winehouse). Whatever the pros and cons on the speech’s content, the president giving this speech is not the washed-up loser that everyone’s been painting him as being. He’s got a lot of skills, and a lot of moves. An incumbent president with a lot of skills and a lot of moves is not going to be easy to beat.