President Obama gave his final State of the Union address last night. He said the economy had improved dramatically under his watch, deficits had shrunk and said gas was under $2/gallon. He also said we face threats from terrorism and inequality, and he seemed to acknowledge personal failures when it came to bipartisanship. The President also said he wanted a cure for cancer in one year, and named Joe Biden to head the effort.
The President will visit an Omaha high school student today.
South Carolina governor Nikki Haley (and an Indian-American) gave the GOP response. She’s a rising star in the party, and performed well. She said the United States should continue to welcome immigrants and said Americans should not give in to the “angriest voices.”
The BBC writing today, “President Barack Obama has vigorously defended his legacy while striking an optimistic note for America's future in his final State of the Union address. He criticised the negative tone of the current presidential race, arguing the US has the "strongest, most durable economy in the world"."Anyone claiming that America's economy is in decline is peddling fiction," Mr Obama told lawmakers in Washington.”
President Obama didn’t discuss Iran in depth. It had been expected he’d talk about securing a nuclear deal with Iran, but then Iran took 10 Navy crew hostage after it said they were trespassing in Iranian waters. The sailors were released this morning.
The Supreme Court today hears arguments in a case brought by the families of Americans killed in terror attacks sponsored by Iran.
Hillary Clinton’s lead over Bernie Sanders is dwindling nationally according to new NYT and CBS polling out last night.
It shows Clinton gets 48% nationally compared to 41% for Sanders. Just a month ago, Hillary Clinton led by 20 points. Young voters support Sanders by 2-to-1 and there’s an increasing enthusiasm gap according to pundits.
Polls this week are also showing Hillary lead in Iowa has disappeared, and Sanders is dominating in New Hampshire.
The New York Times writing today, “Iowa Democrats are displaying far less passion for Hillary Clinton than for Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont three weeks before the presidential caucuses, creating anxiety inside the Clinton campaign as she scrambles to energize supporters and to court wavering voters. The enthusiasm gap spilled abundantly into view in recent days, from the cheering crowds and emotional outpourings that greeted Mr. Sanders, and in interviews with more than 50 Iowans at campaign stops for both candidates. Voters have mobbed Mr. Sanders at events since Friday, some jumping over chairs to shake his hand or snap a selfie. ''Did you get to touch him?'' asked one woman who could not get close enough after an event here on Saturday.”
The Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and John Wagner write today, “A newly aggressive Hillary Clinton emerged here this week and her campaign took on fresh urgency as polls suddenly showed the Democratic presidential front-runner in real danger of losing the first two primary contests to insurgent rival Bernie Sanders. Here in Ames, Clinton launched her sharpest attacks yet by ripping into Sanders on issues such as health care and gun control. She portrayed the senator from Vermont as naive and his proposals as unrealistic - and, seeking to undermine the central argument of his candidacy, alleged that he could not be trusted to take on entrenched interests.”
One person has been detained in Turkey after an-ISIS suicide attack on a tourist area left 10 dead.. mostly German tourists.
Turkey arrested three Russians in Turkey with ties to ISIS. More than 2,700 Russians have left to fight for ISIS or other terror groups.
Belgium has identified three homes used as bases to carry out the terror attacks in Paris.. that left 130 dead.
National Guard troops expected in Flint, Michigan. They are there to distribute water after the city’s drinking water was found to be tainted with lead and making people sick. The city switched its water source as part of a cost-cutting plan.
Markets are pointing to a higher open despite stocks falling another 2% in China.
GE will cut 6,500 jobs in Europe after its acquisition of Alstom.
Tensions continue to ramp up on the Korean peninsula. South Korea fired 20 machine gun warning shots after a North Korean drone crossed the heavily armed border. North Korea tested a nuclear device a week ago.