The State of the Union Addresses from 2013 and 2014 compliment each other pretty well. Although within the speeches there are some contradictory statements (like in the 2014 speech when President Obama said he was concerned about climate change but he also wanted to expand domestic oil and gas production), the two show some progressions from last year and this year.
The president started off both Addresses discussing the need to improve the Nation’s economy. In 2013, he discussed the need to accelerate economic recovery by investing more on clean energy, infrastructure and manufacturing, and pre-school education. In 2014, he said this would be a “year of action” and another year dedicated to improving the economy.(side-note: this subject took up a majority of the speech and allowed home viewers to take a nap, vice versa for congressmen)
Last year the president promised to accelerate troop withdrawals from Afghanistan (half of the troops would return within the year). This year, President Obama said that the war in Afghanistan would finally be over. He additionally said he would veto any new sanctions on Iran. It seems that through these speeches, the war in the Middle East is coming to a close.
President Obama also called for the close of the infamous Guantanamo Bay which leaves people questioning where all of the prisoners will be moved to (freeing or moving them to regular prisons is out of the question. Maybe because of safety concerns because they might be attacked my other prisoners? However, the rumors of torture suggests that the health of said prisoners is not a priority).
In the previous year, President Obama called for a bill to help improve the United State’s carbon footprint (though we still have the largest in the world). This year is when the President’s priorities for the environment are questioned. He called for cleaner energy but also focused on expanding domestic oil and natural gas production. This is really contradictory.
The State of the Union Addresses from these last two years have shown a sign of progression in the nation. Many believe that President Obama needs to take more action. His two speeches show that he is taking action (however it seems more like baby steps but steps no less).