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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The State of the Union Is Slog

Posted by on Tue, Feb 12, 2013 at 5:50 PM

UPDATE 9:20 PM: Aaaaand it's finally all over. A whole lot of pundits thought that President Obama was going to run back to the center tonight, after his aggressively liberal inauguration speech. They were disappointed. This was a speech interested in ending the war in Afghanistan, in raising the minimum wage, in making sure that people have the right to vote, in making education available to more Americans, young and old. It was a speech that didn't throw a sop to clean coal, even though it wasn't as specific about ways to do battle with climate change as it should've been. And it crescendoed—most SotU speeches definitely do not crescendo, but this one did—in a call for Congress to vote on gun control. It was masterful politics because it was genuinely touching. It was a real moment, and it was presented with no small amount of genius by President Obama saying that victims of gun violence "deserve a vote" in Congress. It was a speech that will not help Congress's approval ratings, which means that it was a speech that definitely will help President Obama's approval ratings. Most SotUs are fairly straightforward affairs, choked and stammering with standing ovations and calls for bipartisanship. This speech was not weighted down with applause from either party. That means it was a good speech.

Marco Rubio continues to worry me. The response to the SotU is always a thankless job, and so Rubio just basically gave up on responding and decided instead to deliver a very early draft of his 2016 presidential stump speech. It was heavy on biography, and it dealt with a lot of Rubio's strengths: the immigration story of America, the appeal to common sense, and a call to arms for the middle class. (Rubio even claimed to live in a middle class neighborhood, even though the homes in his so-called middle-class neighborhood average in the half-million dollar range.) You'd hardly know that Rubio had just cast a vote against the Violence Against Women Act. He seemed genial, nervous in a charming sort of way, and passionate. That his speech was a bunch of teabaggy truisms didn't really matter. Marco Rubio made a case for himself tonight, and he always does that very well.

But Rubio was so far to the right in his speech—he affirmed both his opposition to gun control and, in almost the first sentence, his anti-abortion values proudly and clearly—that he didn't really give Rand Paul much room to maneuver in his Tea Party Response to the State of the Union. Paul sounded like a fifth-class intellect, and he mushed around in his father's old speeches until any reasonable person would've had to stop paying attention. Paul kept pretending that he was the only sane man in all of Washington DC. And while that appeals to people who have no idea how politics works (I'm sure he won back a bunch of the Ron Paul supporters who abandoned him after he supported Mitt Romney's candidacy, for instance), it sounded peevish and ignorant to everyone else. Rubio's star is on the rise, and Paul's star might finally be on the descent. With his vacant eyes, his aimless rants, and his purer-than-purist ideology, Paul resembles nothing so much as a male Michele Bachmann. And while Teabaggers might love that kind of thing, nobody else does.

Find the original post after the jump:

ORIGINAL POST: If you're not near a TV, you can watch the State of the Union on YouTube or CSPAN. Marco Rubio's Republican response should be on immediately afterward. And then Rand Paul's Teabagger Response to the Response to the State of the Union will be streaming live on Redstate.com. When all that talking is over, I'll be appearing on the Andrew Walsh show on KIRO tonight at 9-ish to talk about the whole goddamned thing.

Stranger writers (including but not limited to Dan Savage, Christopher Frizzelle, Cienna Madrid, Goldy, Eli Sanders, and myself) will be commenting have commented on the SotU and its many responses inside the Twitter box to the right of this post, and you can also find them by by clicking on this link.

And all those who believe that Twitter is Satan incarnate are encouraged to comment below:

 

Comments (63) RSS

Newest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
lolorhone 63
@62: Uh, overkill, don't cha think? Pretty sure Obama just wants better firearms regulation and enforcement. But it's totally reasonable to equate that with the Fourth Reich. Totally reasonable.
Posted by lolorhone on February 13, 2013 at 3:27 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 62
@60

Yes those victims deserve gun confiscation.

They deserve to have Millions of law abiding Americans be turned into criminals overnight.
They deserve to have Millions of Americans being deprived of their property.
They deserve to have every property searched for firearms.
They deserve the death of anyone who resist the decry.

Cato tell us more about how you want Obama to use drones to kill NRA members, you disgusting sadist fuck.
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on February 13, 2013 at 10:10 AM · Report this
Bauhaus I 61
I get so tired of it. Rubio, the new born king of the Republican Party because he is Latino, spews the same poisonous rhetoric we always hear from that group. They just don't get it. It's like...we don't need a new message. We just need a n****r to deliver it. We don't need to adapt our philosophy to this country's changing demographic. We just need someone wearing a sombrero who has Tupac on his playlist delivering our old, tired, selfish, fuck-the-poor and cut-my-taxes message.

Actually, that may be a good thing. They'll keep losing (unless they can screw people at the polls or gerrymander their district).
Posted by Bauhaus I on February 13, 2013 at 5:25 AM · Report this
Cato the Younger Younger 60
Victims of gun violence deserve a hell of a lot more than a vote Mr. President... a whole hell of a lot more
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on February 13, 2013 at 3:07 AM · Report this
passionate_jus 59
Rubio is a horrible candidate. He's also up for re-election in 2016 which would make it difficult to run for president at the same time.

There's a great chance that he can be defeated for re-election to the Senate. He's not even that well liked in Florida.

He only won the first time because Democrats were divided between Meek and an Independent Charlie Crist.

He's not ready for prime time.

And outside of Florida, who does he excite? Not Latinos in CO, NM, NV or VA, that's for damn sure!
Posted by passionate_jus on February 13, 2013 at 12:26 AM · Report this
Knat 58
When does Rand Paul not sound like a peevish, ignorant, fifth-class intellect?
Posted by Knat on February 12, 2013 at 11:51 PM · Report this
57
Check out Rubio's Spanish version of his response. He appears so much more comfortable giving it in Spanish than English.
Posted by apres_moi on February 12, 2013 at 11:41 PM · Report this
passionate_jus 56
The modern GOP is so out of touch with America. Their answer to Hilary was Palin; their answer to Hispanics is a Cuban known for lying.

Great job GOP!
Posted by passionate_jus on February 12, 2013 at 11:38 PM · Report this
55
@41, Yeah, I know. Once I learned how to surf the net and attach things to emails I thought I was home free. You young'uns never stop tormenting me.
Posted by crone on February 12, 2013 at 11:29 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 54

Watching Rubio, Republicans are still not recognizing their Catch-22 problem.

If the Free Market were so successful, then Obama would never have been elected, because we would all be wealthy and have jobs or bank accounts that we could pay for cancer treatment and college out of pocket.

On the other hand, everyone realizes that Obama is basically a safety net. Do we really want to live our lives in health combines and go to the energy station for credits and other quasi-socialist stuff?

Nope. What we need is a Fertility God. Someone with the spunk (or fecundity) to revivify this country.

I mean, they talk about the GOP being old...how about the whole entire Government...it looked like movie night at the Alzheimer's Home in there.
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://www.you-read-it-here-first.com on February 12, 2013 at 10:36 PM · Report this
seatackled 53
Blitzer, on mic, does a semi-aghast ‘oh my’ as Rubio makes the water lunge. The actual words are ‘uh oh’

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/20…
Posted by seatackled on February 12, 2013 at 10:29 PM · Report this
seatackled 52
He should have had a binder full of water on hand.
Posted by seatackled on February 12, 2013 at 10:25 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 51
Supreme Ruler, surely you are not suggesting that the government has to prop up such a perfect fuel.....
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay http://www.danlangdon.com on February 12, 2013 at 10:24 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 50
WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:
Build The Hydrogen Economy!


This nation needs a new energy infrastructure based on Hydrogen. Hydrogen storage and use augments the capture of green energy from solar, wind and tides. Cities can build fuel cell power plants running on hydrogen right in their densest cores. Fuel cell vehicles can travel hundreds of miles and their tailpipes leave only water vapor. Let us now allocate not thousands, but billions and billions of dollars towards jobs and technology in research, development, investment and infrastructure that complement the new commercial businesses creating product for the use, storage, and creation of Hydrogen.

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petitio…
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://www.you-read-it-here-first.com on February 12, 2013 at 10:11 PM · Report this
49
@44--It was so clear during the whole speech that he was desperately dry-mouthed. He kept flicking his tongue around and making funny faces. I just wanted to shout "take a drink of water already!".
Wiping drips of sweat from his temple was also not too suave, but he only did it a couple of times. Well, the little darling's got a few years to work on his style.
Posted by crone on February 12, 2013 at 10:07 PM · Report this
48
And his inauguration speech was aggressively liberal, my liberal friends don't have that view.
Posted by Seattle14 on February 12, 2013 at 9:51 PM · Report this
47
Really he worries you these were all Romney talking points, how that work out?
Posted by Seattle14 on February 12, 2013 at 9:50 PM · Report this
chaseacross 46
I don't always lean out of frame to get a drink of water, but when I do it's during the GOP response to the SOTU.
Posted by chaseacross on February 12, 2013 at 9:48 PM · Report this
SoUt 45
Man! I wish Adele was there to bitch out all the hos who didn't stand and applaud for equal pay for women in the workplace, whatever. Really gals, you just can't get on board with being treated equal? Stubborn, ignorant, utterly ridiculous.
Posted by SoUt on February 12, 2013 at 9:33 PM · Report this
Joe Szilagyi 44
Rubio's water bottle moment. Hilarious. So much for Rubio 2016.
Posted by Joe Szilagyi http://www.zombo.com on February 12, 2013 at 9:30 PM · Report this
mikethehammer 43
I loathe twitter, but was never a fan of that 'CoverItLive' feed either. Was way too much work to try to follow the threads, look for your comments and keep up with whatever the event was that you were posting your witty comments in reference to. But then, it's a total pain to have to constantly refresh the comments here to look for new ones as well.

I wonder how big a pain in the ass it'd be to install a party line. Or what if we all just purchase electric megaphones and shout shit out our windows?
Posted by mikethehammer on February 12, 2013 at 9:12 PM · Report this
Sean Kinney 42
Your Twitter box thingy is entirely underwhelming.
Posted by Sean Kinney http:// on February 12, 2013 at 9:06 PM · Report this
41
@40, I don't think it's coming back. The lure of Twitter as a broadcasting platform for content providers like Stanger staffers means the podunk liveslog is dead. Amusing while it lasted. The World Cup ones were epic.
Posted by gloomy gus on February 12, 2013 at 8:49 PM · Report this
40
Thank you rob! @36, you beat me to it and said it much more eloquently. I hate twitter, I don't know how to use it and I don't want to learn.
Hey--I'm 8 months away from Medicare and Obama said we should not forget our seniors. Bring back the old way of live slogging.
Posted by crone on February 12, 2013 at 8:26 PM · Report this
39
bring back the chat box!
Posted by gnossos on February 12, 2013 at 8:04 PM · Report this
38
I'm not impressed with Rubio, at all. Two adjectives: Wimpy and phony. Paul's fears are unwarranted. I just can't imagine this drippy suit fielding calls in the Oval Office. If this is the best thing Republicans have going - and it can't be - we're going to be alright.
Posted by floater on February 12, 2013 at 7:58 PM · Report this
37
Twitter was too much effort. Even if I was sober.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:56 PM · Report this
rob! 36
(Holy fuck I hate hashtags and Twitter. This "LiveSlog" was like a Will in Seattle hall-of-mirrors memestorm.)
Posted by rob! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZBdUceCL5U on February 12, 2013 at 7:49 PM · Report this
rob! 35
Did you know the cartilage in ears and noses grows, lifelong, about 0.1mm per year? By the time he's in his 90's, Rubio's nose will look normal and his ears will allow about a 20:1 glide ratio.

#DumboRubio
Posted by rob! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZBdUceCL5U on February 12, 2013 at 7:46 PM · Report this
34
Where is the pretty good option in the poll?
Posted by Seattle14 on February 12, 2013 at 7:42 PM · Report this
wisepunk 33
His tongue is to big for his mouth. It's so distracting. It's like Joaquin Phoenix's harelip, I can't see anything else.
Posted by wisepunk on February 12, 2013 at 7:41 PM · Report this
32
@29 Such a perfect description!
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:36 PM · Report this
31
Did he acknowledge the drone victims' families who were in the audience?
Posted by Linda J on February 12, 2013 at 7:35 PM · Report this
wisepunk 30
Rubio just confirmed he won't be running in 2016 with that speech. He doesn't know it yet, though.
Posted by wisepunk on February 12, 2013 at 7:35 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 29
I just got home in time to see Marco Rubio. What a sweaty, horrible, little man. No wonder he's a rising star of the GOP.
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay http://www.danlangdon.com on February 12, 2013 at 7:34 PM · Report this
Paul Constant 28
@24: That was pretty moving, especially for a State of the Union, which is usually a laundry list.
Posted by Paul Constant http://https://twitter.com/paulconstant on February 12, 2013 at 7:25 PM · Report this
27
Boner just proved (again) that 1) he has horrific taste in ties and 2) he has no class. Surely he could have managed to stand and applaud a 102-year-old American who spent so many hours attempting to exercise her right to vote. What a fucker.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:20 PM · Report this
26
"They deserve a vote" is magic.
Posted by Christopher Frizzelle on February 12, 2013 at 7:20 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 25
Apparently "They deserve a vote!" is the new "4 legs good 2 legs bad!"
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on February 12, 2013 at 7:19 PM · Report this
24
Ok - he just made me cry. It's not the vodka either.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:15 PM · Report this
wisepunk 23
Ok he nailed it there on gun violence.
Posted by wisepunk on February 12, 2013 at 7:14 PM · Report this
22
God dammit. I don't have any god-given rights!
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:09 PM · Report this
21
Yay for equality!!
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:07 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 20
Gay and Str8 Service members to be treated equally.... Rock on!
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on February 12, 2013 at 7:06 PM · Report this
19
I'd rather have a nice bottle of Bailey's for my birthday. Nothing against ponies...
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 7:03 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 18
Obama better end this SOTU with "Everyone gets a pony on their birthday!" or I won't ever vote for him to be President again!
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on February 12, 2013 at 6:59 PM · Report this
wisepunk 17
@14 step 3 is profit.
Posted by wisepunk on February 12, 2013 at 6:52 PM · Report this
16
@13 I'm sure you'd prefer watching a white guy stutter and mispronounce his way through a BS speech with his fake Texas twang.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:52 PM · Report this
15
Ask @arneduncan how much Race To The Bottom has cost public schools. The Feds give very little. It costs more to implement the RTTB requirements than the districts get from the Feds.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:50 PM · Report this
eclexia 14
I will comment that I read your tweet. Let's both facebook that!
Posted by eclexia on February 12, 2013 at 6:50 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 13

Started watching SOTU but turned it off.

It was a repeat.

Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://www.you-read-it-here-first.com on February 12, 2013 at 6:47 PM · Report this
wisepunk 12
@5 true Paul, but there is also the problem of trying to have this conversation without a hash tag to search on every tweet. That means I have to wade through the other 300 people I have on my feed. It's easier to have our little chat in the window. It's ready to go and it works. It's ibuprofen to twitters Celebrex.
Posted by wisepunk on February 12, 2013 at 6:46 PM · Report this
Dominic Holden 11
@7) I just tweeted your comment.
Posted by Dominic Holden on February 12, 2013 at 6:46 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 10
OMG did he say America should be like a European nation, Germany? He IS HITLER! Oh this is all so wrong. What is next, health care for all?
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on February 12, 2013 at 6:45 PM · Report this
Knat 9
@pattonoswalt
I hope Obama advocates preventing old draft dodgers from fucking underage girls so Ted Nugent lunges at him & gets shot. #SOTU

Best tweet I've seen so far.
Posted by Knat on February 12, 2013 at 6:45 PM · Report this
8
Arne Duncan is a dumbshit. Unqualified jackass.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:45 PM · Report this
eclexia 7
@5-- look at the chat so far. Not one person refers to any comment given by another person. You're a bunch of people with megaphones.
Posted by eclexia on February 12, 2013 at 6:40 PM · Report this
6
Boner's tie reminds me of......
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:38 PM · Report this
Paul Constant 5
What are you talking about, @1? I reply to and retweet people all the damned time. If anything, it's easier to get a hold of me on Twitter than it is by e-mail or, hell, even the phone.
Posted by Paul Constant http://https://twitter.com/paulconstant on February 12, 2013 at 6:32 PM · Report this
4
I though Cheney was Satan.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:32 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 3
Twitter is Satan.
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on February 12, 2013 at 6:27 PM · Report this
2
Boner doesn't look very enthused.
Posted by StuckInUtah on February 12, 2013 at 6:21 PM · Report this
eclexia 1
Blah. Twitter puts every staff member in a bubble. No interaction. No contribution from slog commenters. The old chat box was more fun.
Posted by eclexia on February 12, 2013 at 6:21 PM · Report this

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