During and immediately after the State of the Union address, the overall reaction on Twitter was more negative than positive and virtually the same as last year’s verdict. The Pew Research Center used a combination of computer algorithms and human coding to analyze the reaction on Twitter in terms of the topics discussed as well as the sentiment expressed.
Thanks to our friend Roxanne Palmer, we’re live drawing parts of today’s SOTU. It’s an experiment - bear with us - but… YAY!
Catch up with the rest of our team live on Twitter.
[Favorite GIF, so far via @WashingtonPost: ]
President Obama’s State of the Union Address faces a Congress frozen in partisan gridlock while his own popularity has taken a hit over the past year. What chance he will be able to get anything done over the next twelve months?
Last year, Obama watched helpless as his legislative agenda stalled in Congress. His plans for immigration reform and a bill to expand background checks for gun buyers got nowhere.
Though Congress has recently announced deals on a new budget and a farm bill, and talk of immigration reform has picked up again, the chance of Republicans becoming willing partners with the president is remote. Facing this reality, Obama’s State of the Union will stress that if Congress refuses to act he is willing to enact his agenda through executive actions.
For a president to govern through executive action is often controversial, but on priorities like income inequality to climate change, Obama is unlikely to make progress unless he flexes all the powers of his office.
"I’ve got a pen, and I’ve got a phone. And I can use that pen to sign executive orders and take executive actions and administrative actions that move the ball forward," Obama told reporters earlier this month. “I’ve got a phone that allows me to convene Americans from every walk of life, nonprofits, businesses, the private sector, universities to try to bring more and more Americans together around what I think is a unifying theme: making sure that this is a country where, if you work hard, you can make it.”
MORE from Newsweek’s Pema Levy Obama Ready to Sidestep Congress in Today’s State of the Union)
Marco Rubio is either supremely self-aware—or he’s been hacked. Related: ALWAYS OWN IT, AMERICA.
Our State of the Union live chat (complete with livestream) is up and running! Come join our awesome political columnists: John Avlon, Michelle Cottle, Mark McKinnon, Michael Tomasky, and Howard Kurtz (plus your humble social media editors)!
Michelle Obama just greeted her guests!
So what did you think of the speech? No, not the State of the Union; other people are all over that. No, not the iPad launch; we’ve already covered that. I’m talking about the Republican response to the State of the Union, which new Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell delivered, in a twist, in front of a crowd of supporters in the Virginia House of Delegates.
On the one hand, it solved the usual problem, in which the poor sap who draws the short straw for the opposition party has to follow a speech given to standing ovations in the grandeur of the Capitol with an address given to awkward silence into a camera.
On the other hand, it seemed a little weird, like a scene from some postapocalyptic movie in which America has been divided into warring territories, each with its own President and a State of its own Union.
Oh, wait: we do live in that postapocalyptic movie, don’t we?