Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Watching in Washington

(Washington, D.C.) The Handwriting is on the wall in Washington…President Bush’s State of the Union Address tonight challenged the new Democratic Congress to help him achieve several goals for the American People, proposing tax incentives—and dis-incentives for health care, throwing down the gauntlet for renewable energy and bio-fuels, while increasing the Strategic Petroleum Reserve 100%, and seeking better fuel economy for all vehicles by 2017.

Mr. Bush also wants to increase the military by adding another 92,000 personnel, while increasing troop strength in Iraq—temporarily—an issue that has divided the Congress, and inordinately distracted the Administration. Regardless of your political convictions, no one wants failure in the War against Terror. What is less clear is what the handwriting on the wall reads for America’s continuing role in that struggle.

The Democrats’ response to the President’s speech was long on argumentative rhetoric and short on substantive alternatives to the solutions and policies recommended by Mr. Bush. Delivered by Virginia Senator Jim Webb, who publicly shunned the President last year, it was an anticlimactic pary against the thrusts initiated in the State of the Union speech.

So there you have it: Energy, Health Insurance, and Security, including immigration as a subset of that third issue. There are our marching orders—and the challenges with which our congressional delegations must now wrestle.

No comments: