President Obama gave his third State of the Union address last night before members of Congress. He discussed ways to improve the economy, jobs and education, and called on Congress to put aside partisan differences to make decisions in the country's best interest.
In the Republican response to President Obama's address, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels argued that the president has not done enough to curb high unemployment in the U.S. He added that more needs to be done to curb the nation's enormous debt and that U.S. energy sources must be developed to create more jobs.
A highlight of the annual speech to Congress was the presence of Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who recently announced her resignation from office so she may continue to recover from gunshot wounds suffered at a political event last year. Her colleagues in Congress gave her a standing ovation before the State of the Union address.
This video provides complete coverage of the address; the first 11 minutes are pre-speech analysis; the speech occurs between 11:00 and 1:16, followed by analysis. The Republican response begins at 1:28.
1. What is the State of the Union speech? What is its purpose?
2. Who delivers the State of the Union speech? How does the other party traditionally respond?
3. What issues do you think should be mentioned in this year's State of the Union speech? Why?
1. Did President Obama discuss issues you thought were important in the speech? Which did you find most important or interesting? Why?
2. Which elements of Gov. Daniels' response did you most agree with? Disagree with? Why?
3. Do you think Congress will listen to the president's request that they work together more effectively in the coming months? Why or why not? Why is it especially hard for Congress to work together this year?
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