As President George W. Bush prepares to deliver his State of the Union address, American Progress examines our nation’s most pressing issues and asks important questions Americans need answered. Continue to check in with American Progress as we will continue to post new items to this page as the president’s address nears. On Tuesday, we will also post analysis of the State of the Union soon after its conclusion.
• Annotated text of President Bush’s Address
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Talking Points, January 21 2004:
Deficits, Faith-Based Initiative, Health Care, Iraq, Marriage, National Security, Social Security, Taxes, Trade
How Would Elsie Blanton Fare?, January 21, 2004
President Bush invited Elsie Blanton, a senior from Apopka, Florida, to sit in the gallery for his State of the Union address. Clearly Ms. Blanton needs and deserves help with her prescription drug costs. But how would she fare under the new Medicare law?
State of the Union: Correcting the Record on National Security, January 21, 2004
We examine the real record on Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, WMD, U.S. credibility and more.
State of the Union Response, January 20, 2004
A Claims vs. Facts analysis of the president’s remarks.
John Podesta Statement Regarding the State of the Union, January 20, 2004
President Bush tried tonight to convince Americans that tax cuts for the wealthy, massive budget deficits and a misguided plan to fight terrorism make our nation stronger.
State of the Union Viewers’ Guide, January 19, 2004
During the State of the Union, Americans expect the president to address the most pressing concerns facing the country. The Center for American Progress gives you a brief checklist to see whether President Bush does just that.
State of the Union Dictionary, January 19, 2004
A guide to understanding many of the Bush administration’s oft-used phrases. Print this out for the State of the Union to know what the president means when he uses key words.
The President’s (HMO and Insurers’) Health Care Agenda, January 20, 2004
President Bush tonight will acknowledge the nation’s health care cost and coverage problems in the State of the Union address, but offer poorly designed and inadequately financed solutions that would actually exacerbate the problems.
A Progressive View of the State of the Union, January 15, 2004
As President Bush prepares to tell the American people that the State of the Union is strong, our nation stands divided at home and weaker abroad. The administration’s extremist policies have hurt hard-working families and failed to make the American people safer than we were one year ago.
On the Issues
Do Deficits Matter?, by Gene Sperling, January 20, 2004
For decades, policymakers across the political spectrum have shared a fundamental value in the importance of generational responsibility – the notion that each generation feels a responsibility to take the actions and sacrifices necessary to leave their children a more perfect nation in which to live.
What Should Be in the State of the Union, by Robert O. Boorstin, January 19, 2004
As you spend these last hours considering your speech tonight, we recommend that you make a sharp turn in your approach. Specifically, we think that you should shoot straight with the American people about the course of our national security policy over the past year and the tough realities that lie ahead in 2004.
Support for Children and Families, January 16, 2004
Last year, as part of the administration’s tax package, Congress accelerated virtually all of the income tax cuts that had been adopted in 2001. Yet, inexplicably, both President Bush and the Republican majority determined not to accelerate a scheduled increase in the child tax credit available for lower income families as part of their package. Director Robert Greenwald will soon release a film on the Child Tax Credit. Here’s a preview.
Buyer Beware: Pension Wealth Inequality Rises as 401(k) Plans Become More Popular, by Edward N. Wolff and Christian Weller, January 16, 2004
Retirement income security remains an elusive goal for many workers. More than half of all private sector workers do not have a pension. As a result, many workers are inadequately prepared for retirement.
Memo to Reporters: Public Opinion, by Ruy Teixeira, January 15, 2004
In reality, Bush faces a public skeptical in important ways of what he has done and where he proposes to go. Here’s an issue-by-issue guide to this skepticism in key areas likely to be addressed by the president.
Unanswered Questions on Proposals to Cover Uninsured, by Terri Shaw, January 14, 2003
The Institute of Medicine has issued a challenge to the President and Congress – ensure that every person in this country has health insurance by 2010. Will President Bush meet this challenge? His record to date suggests not.
State of the Union Preview, January 20, 2004
Rhetoric vs. Reality: Job Training Proposal, January 20, 2004
News reports indicate that in his State of the Union Address, President Bush will propose $120 million in “new” job training grants at community colleges. The problem is, the proposal comes after Bush has repeatedly slashed job training and vocational education programs.
In Their Own Words, January 16, 2004
President Bush is expected to reiterate his claim that he has a plan to cut the deficit in half in his State of the Union Speech. First and foremost, his “plan” is based on false budget assumptions which “omit a series of very likely or inevitable costs in taxes, defense spending, and other areas.”
Comparing Priorities, January 14, 2004
In his upcoming budget, President Bush is proposing more than $2 trillion in new spending on everything from more tax cuts for the wealthy to a mission to Mars. At the same time, he is proposing no real way to deal with a record budget deficit that “threatens financial stability of the global economy,” while proposing severe cuts in critical health research, job training, housing and veterans programs.
TomPaine.com’s State of the Union Scorecard
Middle Class Under Assault, AFL-CIO
Tax Cuts Fail to Create Jobs, Create Fiscal Disaster, Fair Taxes for All
The Truth About the State of the Environment, U.S. Public Interest Research Group
The Real State of the Union, Campaign for America’s Future