*Washington, D.C. – Black conservatives affiliated with the Project 21 leadership network are unimpressed with President Barack Obama’s progress during his three years in office. They say Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night was long on rhetoric and short in presenting a strategy to fix the stagnant American economy that has not improved under his leadership.
“President Obama’s State of the Union address was no more than a reminder of the failures of his presidency. When given an opportunity to create an economy ‘built to last’ – by taking on Washington’s culture of fiscal irresponsibility, reining in an excessively regulatory administration and enacting true entitlement reform – he repeatedly pushed an agenda geared to push more debt on the backs of our children and grandchildren,” said Project 21 Spokesman Coby W. Dillard “Instead of presenting true solutions to Congress, he repeatedly bypasses them with executive orders and recess appointments, seeking to give this behavior legitimacy by calling it ‘action.’ While speaking of a ‘renewal of American values’ before Congress, his actions trample on the very rights and freedoms that are the foundation of this great nation.”
President Obama’s speech to Congress was dominated by class warfare language and rallying cries against wealthier Americans of the sort championed by Occupy Wall Street protesters. For example, Obama gave the stark contrast: “We can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well, while a growing number of Americans barely get by. Or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.”
“For nearly every eloquent thought our President expressed tonight, there are contradictions and hypocrisies in his actions and leadership preventing the fruition of a stated desire for jobs, a strong economy and energy efficiency. When President Obama says we should all play by the same rules, for instance, does he include the millions of Americans on food stamps and welfare who are reaping benefits of bad decisions?” asked Project 21 Spokeswoman Lisa Fritsch “The bottom line and sad truth is that Obama’s speech was another big government bonanza. For all his reminiscing over the building of the Hoover Dam and Americans’ hard work ethic, his speech was rooted in what government is doing for us now that we apparently can no longer be expected to do for ourselves. It’s a real shame to see that he still seems to have no idea about the American way.”
While much of the President’s speech was dedicated to criticizing his political opponents in Congress for their alleged inaction, the day of this particular presidential address coincidentally falls on the 1,000th day since the Senate (whose majority is of the President’s party) passed a formal budget.
“This year’s ‘State of Confusion’ speech proved to be too little and too late for the economy,” said Project 21 Spokeswoman Cherylyn Harley LeBon. “Last year, Obama called for a bipartisan fiscal commission and said ‘This can’t be one of those Washington gimmicks that lets us pretend we solved a problem.’ Never mind a gimmick – his budget all but ignored the recommendations of his own bipartisan debt commission. In just three years, President Obama has racked up more job-killing debt than was created between the presidencies of George Washington and George H.W. Bush. Tonight offered no change.”
As President Obama touted his green jobs agenda tonight, it was reported that 1.7 million jobs have been lost since his inauguration. Yet this is an America Obama sees as “built to last.”
“Ironically, Obama’s war on fossil fuels is a war against hard-working Americans because high energy prices have a disproportional impact on middle and lower-income households,” said Project 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli “The President’s refusal to allow construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, costing approximately 20,000 jobs, is proof that he is putting his radical ideology before the welfare of American families. Obama’s hostility toward coal is a huge barrier for companies to build domestic manufacturing plants. Coal provides about 45 percent of our electricity, and the regulations coming from the Obama Administration EPA are imposing significant costs on utilities which will be passed to consumers and businesses. High electricity prices will force companies to build manufacturing facilities overseas.”
“All Americans want a country where hard work pays off and responsibility is rewarded. That country, however, is not President Obama’s to give. Government cannot give what God has already provided. The failure of President Obama to realize that equal opportunity is not synonymous with equal results is probably the greatest marker of his failed administration,” added Project 21’s Coby Dillard. “If the President believes that the sustainability of our nation begins with ‘responsibility from everyone,’ he and his administration should lead by example.”
Project 21, a leading voice of black conservatives for nearly two decades, is sponsored by the National Center for Public Policy Research (http://www.nationalcenter.org).