The state of the union

The Center for American Progress has just completed its four-part report on the state of the union. Not the smoke and mirrors act to be trotted out by our sagging president on Tuesday, but an honest-to-goodness assessment of where we're at with respect to...

  1. National Security:
    "More than four years after 9/11, Osama bin Laden is still alive, al Qaeda has spawned new terrorist networks, and global terrorism is on the rise. According to the Bush administration's own statistics, the problem of international terrorism is worse now than it was in 2001."
  2. Economy:
    "Historically-low job growth, declining wages, rising poverty, record deficits, and the worst deterioration of America's fiscal situation in history characterize the current state of the U.S. economy."
  3. Health Care:
    "The United States spends approximately $1.7 trillion -- over 15 percent of the nation's economy -- on health care, yet the nation still falls behind on basic health care measures. "Health care costs are seen as the primary threat facing our country's economy," and the Bush administration has only made the situation worse. During President Bush's term, "the number of Americans without health insurance has increased by 6.2 million," now totaling nearly 46 million. Three-in-four Americans, including 62 percent of those who voted for Bush in the last election, feel the Bush administration and Congress have failed to address the growing health care crisis in our country."
  4. Energy and the Environment:
    "In his 2003 State of the Union Address, President Bush pledged to "promote energy independence for our country, while dramatically improving the environment." He has failed on both counts."

Are Americans fooled? Not really. As the below polls show, Bush and much of the GOP leadership is not in good standing with Americans. This is, in fact, a great time for the opposition to stand up with some very clear and strongly-worded statements and proposals to sharpen the distinction between the status quo and the alternative.

1) NEW YORK TIMES/CBS NEWS POLL: Bush Approval Is At...

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