#LibertyLost – The transcript of President Obama’s final State of the Union: What he said, and what it meant – 2016 Final Address
President Obama has given his last State of the Union address in front of Congress on Tuesday night. Below is a transcript of his remarks.
The Fix team has highlighted key portions of the speech and provided context, links and analysis. If you’d like to join us in annotating the president’s speech, make sure to head on over to Genius to sign up for an account.
(Also see the bottom for our annotations of South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s official Republican response.)
Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, members of Congress, my fellow Americans: tonight marks the eighth year that I’ve come here to report on the state of the Union. And for this final one, I’m going to try to make it a little shorter.
I know some of you are antsy to get back to Iowa.
I’ve been there. I’ll be shaking hands afterwards if you want some tips.
Now, I understand that because it’s an election season, expectations for what we will achieve this year are low. But, Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the constructive approach that you and other leaders took at the end of last year to pass a budget and make tax cuts permanent for working families.
So I hope we can work together this year on some bipartisan priorities likecriminal justice reform, and helping…
… and helping people who are battling prescription drug abuse and heroin abuse.
So who knows. We might surprise the cynics again.
But tonight, I want to go easy on the traditional list of proposals for the year ahead. Don’t worry, I’ve got plenty, from helping students learn to write computer code to personalizing medical treatments for patients.
And I will keep pushing for progress on the work that I believe still needs to be done: fixing a broken immigration system…
… protecting our kids from gun violence, equal pay for equal work, paid leave, raising the minimum wage.
All these things — all these things still matter to hardworking families. They’re still the right thing to do, and I won’t let up until they get done. But for my final address to this chamber, I don’t want to just talk about next year. I want to focus on the next five years, the next ten years and beyond. I want to focus on our future.
We live in a time of extraordinary change — change that’s reshaping the way we live, the way we work, our planet, our place in the world. It’s change that promises amazing medical breakthroughs, but also economic disruptions that strain working families.
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