The more things change, the more things stay the same. A little over a year ago, President Barack Obama came to office expecting to pass a “big bang” of policy changes all in the first year: health care, cap-and-trade, and banking regulation. With the big-bang strategy officially a failure , President Obama’s State of the Union address last night desperately tried to keep all of these legislative efforts alive while also acknowledging that the country has firmly rejected his policy agenda.
The result was an incoherent mess of promised tax cuts for small businesses coupled with the threat of tax hikes from his health care and energy proposals; more federal money to encourage banks to lend to businesses, coupled with new taxes on banks and individuals; the continued waste of his $862 billion stimulus plan and $2 trillion in new health care spending, coupled with a delayed and temporary spending freeze. As one of the longest State of the Unions in the past 45 years,  we cannot cover everything here. But our crack team of Heritage experts did hit almost every issue last night, and you can read their full reactions here .