I Don't Quit

Thursday, January 28, 2010
A threat? A promise? President Barack Obama ended his State of The Union speech with a clear statement of his personal resolve and optimism. He was forceful. He was clear. For one hour last night, Barack Obama was the guy who ran for the presidency last year. It was a strong performance.

How strong? The initial reaction on Fox News was subdued and restrained. MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, and Chris Matthews seemed reinvigorated and emboldened.

This blog, Health Insurance Issues With Dave, deals with one particular issue, health care, So what did the President say about our issue last night? The quick answer – not too much.

Thirty-two minutes into his speech, President Obama touched upon health care. He mentioned that he had gotten close to passing legislation. He noted that his plan was not politically popular. He admitted that they, he and the Democrats in Congress, had handled this badly. He acknowledged emerging trust issues. He dared the Republicans to offer alternate suggestions. But that’s it.

There were no specific goals. No mention of shared sacrifice. No direction. And in the end, at no point did President Obama take the time to explain what he was going to do to make changes in our health care system more possible, productive and palpable. He threw the ball back to Congress where the Democrats will muck it up and the Republicans will dig in their heels.

President Obama said that he won’t quit. Great. I don’t want him to quit. I want him to start.