SOTU: No credibility on domestic issues

Updated
 

First, a tip of the hat. The President’s salute to Nancy Pelosi was  clever and classy.

But he just has no credibility talking about domestic problems in this  country.  The President wants a balanced budget and no tax  increases.  He says he wants to offer health insurance tax deductions  for people - though most people who need insurance don’t make enough  money to take advantage of the tax credit.  Presumably, he is doing  it this way because he thinks direct reimbursement of providing  health insurance would be too expensive. He wants to reauthorize the  “No Child Left Behind Act’ for education though he doesn’t want to  give the schools any more money.  Presumably that’s too expensive.   He wants energy independence but won’t increase the royalties paid by  oil companies for extracting oil on federal land or suggest new  federal subsidies for alternative fuels.  Presumably that’s too  expensive.

How expensive?  For the cost of the war today in Iraq, we could fund  a significant portion of the above and still have money left.  We  could give universal pre-school for every child in this country and  cover their health care costs - and still have money left.  We could  double health research for Cancer, AIDS and heart disease and still  have money left.  We could add to that a tripling of funds we have  given to rebuild New Orleans and the Gulf Coast and still have money  left.  And what?  You say what about national secuirty because of the  terrrist threat?  Oh yes, we could also fund port screening, and rail  and ship carrier screenings and other first responder needs.

If our national domestic priorities were truly meaningful for the  President, they wouldn’t be too expensive.

The Democratic response from Senator Webb needs to applaud the  President for putting domestic issues back on the agenda and not let  him get away with shortcutting a rational  explanation about his  goals and exit strategy for Iraq.  And then Democrats need to show  the country why we have sought their leadership in the Congress once  again.  And Jim Webb needs to pull out his best story telling face.

SOTU: No credibility on domestic issues

Updated