On Monday’s broadcast of FNC’s “The O’Reilly Factor,” network senior political analyst Brit Hume downplayed the notion that President Barack Obama will use his State of the Union address to take on economic issues, despite certain metrics showing the economy still in despair.
“A State of the Union address is … very long in comparison, for example, to an inaugural address or your standard campaign speech,” Hume said. “So you know, you will be able to find passages in it in which he probably will talk, at least in passing, about the need to cut spending. … But it won’t be the kind of reforms of the entitlement programs that Republicans have been pushing for a long time, and which are the big drivers of the debt.”
“The buzz in Washington over the weekend,” Hume said, “has been that he is going to pivot to the economy. He is going to focus on the economy, because it is still weak.”
But President Obama won’t tackle substantive economic issues during the speech, primarily because he doesn’t understand them, according to Hume.
“I have had a suspicion for a long time … that this president is not really very interested in or by the economy,” Hume continued. “He doesn’t really fully understand it. I think that he is much more preoccupied with quality of opportunity — or at least or even equality of income and with social justice — than he with the growth of the economy. And if the economy is bumping along at 1 or 2 percent growth, that may be good enough for him.”
But Hume did say the president may use the State of the Union to advance at least one important issue.
“Immigration is one [area] where he might indeed get something done,” Hume said.