Although some on the right have given President Barack Obama’s inaugural address less-than-favorable reviews for its liberal message, it impressed New York Times columnist David Brooks for that reason.
During Monday’s coverage of the inauguration on PBS, Brooks admitted the speech was about ideology, which was a far one from his first term.
“It was about collectivity,” Brooks said. “There’s no question about that. Four years ago, it was about being trans-partisan, about healing divides. He was sort of above the fray. Now he’s in the fray. He’s picked a team. And his team is his party, his belief system. And I thought he made the case for a very pragmatic, prudential, incremental, but progressivism, a more forthright case for progressivism than we have heard in some time, even more than Bill Clinton ever made.”
For that reason, Brooks rated the address as one of the best inaugural speeches in the last 50 years.
“And so I thought he raised the debate,” Brooks said. “And it’s good to have this debate. I really thought it was one of the best inaugural speeches in the past half-century, because those — the speeches that work are making an argument for something. And he made an argument for something. And then, you know, I’m not as liberal as he. So, I then thought, ‘Oh, here’s where I differ. Here’s where I don’t.’ So, I thought it was really educational and very provocative.”