Erika Johnsen

Situated in the press gallery directly above and behind President Obama's head on Tuesday evening, I and several other reporters were in the unique position of looking out in front of us and sharing an almost exact viewpoint with President Obama. Although the President's attention was likely focused more on the teleprompters than his immediate audience, I was in the fortunate position of being able to both see and observe the Congresspeople (many either disgruntled or doting), the attentive cabinet members, the stoic justices, and various guests seated around him.

The President's speech itself, however, left me rather dismayed. Although the terms "fair shot/shake/share," "play by the same rules," and "obstruction" have already been debunked well past transparent platitudes for GOPers, President Obama's class-warfare rabble-rousing actually seemed sincerely energizing for the Democrats, who cheered and clapped enthusiastically at every mention. Really, I had to hand it to him -- President Obama is quite the campaigner. He easily integrated intelligent words like "markets," "innovation," and "competition" into his speech in ways that sounded exciting and appealing, most especially if you've never actually studied economics -- which, of course, many people haven't. I was pretty sure our leader was willfully misleading.

I have to agree with Sen. Marco Rubio's post-speech remarks:

“The president is on the verge of committing economic malpractice," Rubio said after the president's address to a joint session of Congress.

“How does raising taxes create jobs? How does raising my boss’s taxes help me keep my job? Why is he advocating policies that will punish people that are investing in American businesses that are creating middle class jobs?" Rubio asked.

The President proposed a lot of the same old failed economic policies under only slightly different guises -- in a nutshell, bigger government and more "investment" on our behalf. Making the wealthy pay their "fair share" is going to do absolutely nothing in helping us cut down on our unfunded liabilities. Our ever-ballooning public debt is the emergency that is actually crushing our economy, and the President offered no real action on how to fix it. I think that, like the now-highly unpopular ObamaCare and the now-impractical crusade against global warming, the President is just trying to sweep the debt under the rug -- very convenient in an election year. And as nice as they might sound, all of the green energy projects, tax cuts for the middle class, and education reforms in the world aren't going to solve the problem.


Erika Johnsen

Erika Johnsen is a Web Editor for Townhall.com and Townhall Magazine. Follow her on Twitter @erikajohnsen.