Two leading Democratic strategists -- William Galston and Stan Greenberg -- have both offered their analysis of Obama's State of the Union Address.
Galston evaluated the speech in the context of Obama's overall strategy for his second term. Here's how he begins:
President Obama's victory in the 2012 election left Republicans in control of the House of Representatives. That left the administration with a fundamental strategic choice: to reach out to the opposition, or to use the lever of public opinion to move House Republicans in their direction. The negotiations over the fiscal cliff suggested that the White House had chosen the latter course. The president's 2013 State of the Union address-his single best opportunity to set the agenda for his second term-offers further evidence of that choice, on which he is betting the future of his presidency. In a wide-ranging speech focused on strengthening the middle class, Obama gave little ground to his adversaries.
Read Galston's complete analysis HERE.
Stan Greenberg's Democracy Corps ran focus groups and used dial testing to gauge the response to the speech. Here's how Stan summarized his findings:
Dial testing and follow-up focus groups with 44 swing voters in Denver, Colorado show that President Obama's second term agenda-expressed through new policies for energy, pay equity, jobs, and education-was well-received by voters. The President made impressive gains on his personal favorability and trust to move the country in a direction that reflects voters' values. Following the speech, voters gave him high marks on women's issues, looking out for the middle class, and plans for the economy. Even Republicans in our audience responded positively to Obama's plan for tax reform and his call for bipartisan cooperation to break the gridlock in Washington.
Read the full Democracy Corps memo HERE.
We believe you will find both of these analyses useful and important.
The Democratic Strategist