President Barack Obama said his State of the Union address on Tuesday that America has “the strongest, most durable economy in the world” and called statements of economic decline "fiction."

President Barack Obama’s last State of the Union address on Capitol Hill focused on the economy, technology, keeping America safe “without becoming the world’s policeman,” and how to make the country’s politics “the best in us, and not what’s worst.”

President Obama said he wanted to talk about the next five years, ten years and beyond, “I want to focus on our future.”

US Economy

The first part of Obama speech referenced his administration’s achievement, unemployment cut in half, nearly 900,000 new jobs in the past six years, a strong economy.

Obama said anyone claiming America’s economy is in decline “is peddling fiction,” but he did acknowledge that Americans feel anxious because the economy has changed with technology.

He said technology doesn’t just replace jobs on the assembly line “but any job where work can be automated.” He said workers have less leverage for a pay raise as companies are in a global economy can locate anywhere and “face tougher competition.”

Obama said sixty years ago, “the Russians beat us into space,” but that didn’t deter the US from creating a space program and from “walking on the moon.” He said he was announcing a new national effort, led by Vice President Joe Biden for “a new moonshot” for “America to cure cancer,” by giving the National Institutes of Health “the strongest resources they’ve had in over a decade.”


Obama said Social Security and Medicare were more important than ever, and the programs should be strengthen not weakened. The said his Affordable Care Act was all about filling the gaps in employer-based care, and nearly 18 million "have gained coverage so far."

"Now, I'm guessing we won't agree on health care anytime soon," he said. "But there should be other ways both parties on improve economic security."

International Arena

“The United States of America is the most powerful nation on Earth. Period. It’s not even close. We spend more on our military than the next eight nations combined,” said Obama to a thunderous applause.

Obama said no nation dared attack the US or its allies because they know that’s the path to ruin.

“In today’s worlds, we are threatened less by evil empires and more by failing states,” said Obama. The Middle East is going through a transformation that “will play out for a generation, rooted in conflicts that date back millennia.”

“We need to focus on destroying ISIL,”  they “need to be rooted out, hunted down and destroyed,” but Obama said Congress needs to be serious about “winning the war.”

Obama said American led a coalition of more than 60 counties to cut of ISIL’s financing, disrupt their plots, flow of fighters and stamp out their “vicious ideology,” with nearly 10,000 air strikes.

He said the American people should know that with or without Congressional action, ISIL will learn the same lessons as terrorists before them.

“If you doubt America’s commitment – or mine – to see justice is done, ask Osama bin Laden,” said Obama.

The prepared remarks made no mention about the capture of two US navy vessels by Iran on Tuesday afternoon.

But Obama’s remarks did refer to the global coalition built with Iran “with sanctions and principled diplomacy, to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.” Referring to rolling back Iran nuclear program, “shipping out its uranium stockpile” and “avoid another war.”

Obama said he will keep working to shut down the prison at Guantanamo, “it’s expensive, it’s unnecessary, and it only serves as a recruitment brochure for our enemies.”

Swipes at Republicans

While Obama didn't single out Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump for his controversial and racist statements by name, he was blunt in his critique.

Obama said America needed to reject any politics that targets people because or race or religion. It is not a matter of political correctness but "a matter of understanding."

“When politicians insult Muslims, when a mosque is vandalized, or a kid bullied, that doesn’t make us safer," said Obama. "That not telling it like it is. It’s just wrong. It diminishes us in the eyes of the world."

Trump tweeted the Iran deal "is terrible" asking why the US didn't get the uranium stockpile, and generally was critical of Obama's last State of the Union.

Courtesy: RT