TheDC Morning

TheDC Morning: Citizen Obama

Jamie Weinstein Senior Writer

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1.) Citizen Obama — President Obama highlighted the importance of the state in his State of the Union Speech Tuesday night. TheDC’s Neil Munro reports:

“President Barack Obama’s 2013 State Of The Union speech aggressively placed government at the center of Americans’ lives, starting with a litany of government economic plans, and ending by celebrating Americans as the subjects of government. ‘As Americans, we all share the same proud title: We are citizens,’ he said emphatically at the end of his speech. ‘It’s a word that doesn’t just describe our nationality or legal status,’ he said with great vehemence. ‘It captures the enduring idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another and to future generations.’ Merriam-Webster defines a citizen as ‘a legally recognized subject or national of a state or commonwealth, either native or naturalized.'”

Debt? What debt?

2.) Rubio responds — Marco Rubio countered the president’s message by highlighting the importance of the individual. TheDC’s Caroline May reports:
“Florida Senator Marco Rubio delivered the Republican response — in both English and Spanish — to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address, championing economic growth and offering a limited government contrast to the president’s vision. Considered to be a rising star in the GOP and already under the microscope as a potential 2016 presidential candidate, Rubio commenced speaking on opportunity and the promise of America. ‘For much of human history, most people were trapped in stagnant societies, where a tiny minority always stayed on top, and no one else even had a chance,’ he said. ‘But America is exceptional because we believe that every life, at every stage, is precious, and that everyone everywhere has a God-given right to go as far as their talents and hard work will take them.'”
It was a solid speech, which will unfortunately be most remembered for him awkwardly interrupting it to take a sip of water. Such is the media age we live in. But make no mistake, Rubio is a force to be reckoned with.

3.) Brain surgeons for Rubio — Or at least one brain surgeon. Dr. Ben Carson, whose speech last week at the National Prayer Breakfast has received plaudits from conservatives, told TheDC’s Vince Coglianese that he rather likes Marco Rubio:

“Brain surgeon and sudden conservative darling Dr. Ben Carson doesn’t really mind if you thought his blunt in-Obama’s-face criticism of the president was ‘offensive.’ And which politician best articulates the doctor’s values? That would be Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who Carson calls a ‘very rational individual.’ Following a whirlwind of media attention surrounding his unconventionally critical speech during last week’s National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, Dr. Carson agreed to an extensive phone interview with The Daily Caller.”

See the full interview.

4.) What’s so bad about Al-Jazeera? — Where to begin? How about with this report for TheDC by Nicole Lafond:

“Aides to former Democratic Vice President Al Gore have failed to respond to a recent Al-Jazeera TV broadcast, in which a top imam affirmed the death penalty for anyone who quits Islam. Gore sold his Current TV network to Al-Jazeera, which now plans to extend its broadcast into the United States this summer, according to Ashok Sinha, vice president of corporate communications at Current TV/Al-Jazeera America. Gore reportedly sold Current TV for $500 million and endorsed Al-Jazeera’s news programs.”

Gore has sought to defend his sale to Al Jazeera, but it’s hard to defend some of the programming on the network’s Arabic channel. Scratch hard. More like impossible. But Gore might not care all that much with all the new green bills he now has lining his pockets.

5.) Tweet of Yesterday Jeffrey Goldberg: The head of the IAEA calls the North Korean nuclear test “deeply regrettable.” That “deeply” will certainly frighten Kim Jong-un.

6.) Poll of the Day: Americans overwhelmingly support regularizing immigrants — CBS News asked adults nationwide, “Which comes closest to your view about illegal immigrants who are currently working in the U.S.? They should be allowed to stay in their jobs and to eventually apply for U.S. citizenship. OR, They should be allowed to stay in their jobs only as guest workers, but not to apply for U.S. citizenship. OR, They should be required to leave their jobs and leave the U.S”: 53% said they should stay and be allowed to apply for citizenship, 21% they should be allowed to stay as guest workers, 21% said they should leave the U.S., while 5% said they were unsure.

VIDEO: George Will says Obama SOTU speech makes it clear no entitlement reform, no spending cuts in future

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