The State of the Union address is one of the few American presidential traditions that still exists.
George Washington gave the first such speech before a joint session in congress about 225 years ago. Thomas Jefferson discontinued the act of delivering the address in person 30 years later, but in 1913, Woodrow Wilson reestablished the live speech, and it’s mostly continued that way ever since.
Barack Obama delivered his sixth State of the Union address last night. It was the lowest-rated address in 15 years, but nonetheless, contained its usual antics of faux bipartisanship, an abundance of standing ovations, and the president touting the successes he’s experienced during his term.
The most memorable of the moment was a zinger delivered by Obama, about three quarters through the speech, when he began a sentence saying “I have no more campaigns to run…” which was a met with a sarcastic applause by House Republicans, who now outnumber Democrats by a substantial margin.
Obama smirked, and without hesitation, responded: “I know, because I won both of them.”
BAM. SHOTS FIRED. OWNED. SWISH. OTHER EXPRESSIONS TO CONVEY CONQUEST IN ALL CAPS.
Seriously though, it was a sweet moment for Barry O., and one that must have given him great satisfaction. It’s pretty crazy to believe in two years from now, we will be swearing in a new president.
I remember clearly where I was, six years ago, the moment I learned Obama was to be our next president. I was literally in the shittiest bar near my university, in upstate Binghamton, called the Rathskeller, which is located in the basement of another bar. I was engaged in a vicious beer pong tournament when the emcee stopped the music for a second and said, “Guys, it’s official — Barack Obama won the presidential election.”
I turned to the TV, saw Obama waving, shrugged, and immediately returned to my beer pong game. I probably got drunk enough that I threw up later that night.
Man, does time fly.
Obama has one more State of the Union left, and I expect him to bring it on like Kirsten Dunst in a cheerleader movie.
By the way, you all know who John Boehner is, right? If not, he was the dude over Obama’s left shoulder with the ridiculously orange tan who looked miserable throughout the entire speech. Because he’s a Republican.
Just in case you were wondering if you should take him seriously or not as a politician — or even as a human being — it’s worth noting that, last week, he responded to Obama’s proposal to provide free tuition to community college students by…
…wait for it…
USING TAYLOR SWIFT GIFS.
The presiding officer of the House of Representatives actually retorted to a presidential proposal using 13 digital images conveying different emotions expressed by Taylor Swift, to help prove his point.
How Boehner and his staff managed to even secure all of these different images of Taylor Swift, I do not know.
I’m all for bringing Taylor Swift into any conversation, regardless of the topic, but when you’re the third most powerful person in government, and do it — 13 times — it’s probably not the most strategic or wisest maneuver in order to be taken seriously.
But if I know Obama, I’m sure he handled it the same way he did the snarky applause during his State of the Union address.
By shaking it off.