SOTU Review

In the aftermath, network gabbers mostly talking about Cory Remsberg. They seem to think the moment reflected some genuine bipartisanship that transcended everything else going on in Washington. I dunno about that, but clearly, Remsberg set a new and high standard for Real People in the Gallery.

My general reaction was that this was kind of a minimalist version of one of those second-term Clinton SOTUs that covered a lot of ground and conveyed the sense that the president was snapping his fingers impatiently at the louts sitting down there on the other side of the aisle. I regret he didn’t hit the inequality theme a lot harder–profits sky-high, wages stagnant, long-term unemployed left behind–but he made for some uncomfortable moments for GOP solons on the UI and minimum-wage issues.

It kinda reminds me of the moment after Al Gore’s 2000 Democratic Convention acceptance speech (you know, the one with the kiss). As I stood there beneath the balloon drop, one of Gore’s speechwalkers came by, winked and said: “Whaddya think? Ground-rule double?” “Yep, that’s about right,” I replied.

Right now NBC is showing the snow drifting down in front of the Capitol. Brings back a special memory I had of being on that spot very late at night, watching the snow drift down alone. It can be a beautiful place, with no pols around.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.