For the first time in his presidency, Barack Obama addressed a Congress that was controlled by Republicans in both houses.
Obama’s sixth State of the Union speech, which had a theme of resurgence, addressed topics which ranged from economic growth during his term, as well as new proposals relating to income inequality and the cost of college education.
The first portion of his speech focused on what he called “middle class economics” and how the citizens of the United States have adapted to circumstances to give everyone a fair shot.
The president called for equal pay for women, guaranteed sick, maternity leave and universal quality child care more available.
“These ideas won’t make everybody rich, or relieve every hardship. That’s not the job of government,” said Obama.
In addition to this, the president proposed to make the first two years of community college free for those who work hard to want it.
On foreign policy, the president urged for congress to pass a resolution to authorize the use of force against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
“Instead of getting dragged into another ground war in the middle east, we are leading a broad coalition, including Arab nations, to degrade and ultimately destroy this terrorist group,” said Obama stressing that the effort will take time.
Obama asked that Congress pass legislation to better meet the threat of cyber-attacks.
“No foreign nation, no hacker, should be able to shut down our networks, steal our trade secrets, or invade the privacy of American families,” said Obama.
The president had a number of guests he mentioned during his speech. One guests mentioned ,astronaut Scott Kelly, Obama used to highlight the technological strength of the United States and NASA’s goal of eventually sending people to Mars.
“In two months, to prepare us for those missions, Scott Kelly will begin a year-long stay in space,” said Obama.
At the end of his speech, he urged lawmakers to come together to find common ground.
“I commit to every Republican here tonight that I will not only seek out your ideas, I will seek to work with you to make this country stronger,” said Obama.
On Thursday, the president will give a speech at the University of Kansas, a place no sitting president has been in the last century.
Tickets became available Tuesday morning to KU students, who waited in an hours long line. The tickets were free, but limited.
The president is scheduled to begin his speech at 11 a.m. on Thursday.