Obama’s Final State of the Union Address, 2016
The final State of the Union address by President Barack Obama really jolted the twitter traffic as the hashtag #SOTU was used over 761,000 times in tweets from Twitter users when the speech was being delivered by the President, which is 500,000 times over and above the number when the speech started and no participation from House Speaker Paul Ryan was mentioned quiet heavily in those tweets as well. #PaulRyan was the top hashtags that were used during the speech, in accordance from Zoomph, a social media analytics firm. He only appeared once, applauding the President when he mentioned US military troops. Anand Giridharadas who is an author and New York Times columnist, tweeted @AnandWrites that we need to cure the problem that prevent Paul Ryan to clap for even the things on which he agrees with #SOTU.
In his address, the President was widely expected to emphasize on controlling the guns, the word gun only appeared single time in the speech when he was very quickly summarizing the proposals he has made. He also left the chair empty in the box where Michelle Obama,The First Lady was sitting and honoring the people who died due to violence caused by guns. #EmptySeat was also among those hashtags that went viral during the speech responding to this gesture by the President. The word gun only was said once as compared to the word climate change which was mentioned four times and the word economy which was mentioned 15 times. The speech was shorter as well, being 5438 words long as compared to the 6776 words long speech of last year. The president was also expected to provide the details of the role of Vice President Joe Biden but that didn’t happen and The White House issued a post by VP Joe Biden detailing his new task which was to head the initiative for finding the the cure for cancer.
At quarter past 9 in the morning President Barack Hussein Obama enters the United States House of Representatives for delivering his final State of the Union address being United States commander in chief. After taking the podium he begins by promising to keep his speech a bit shorter and joking because many of the people have to go to Iowa at the site of the first United States party caucuses before the presidential election in November. In accordance with the advance text of speech, the President was to rebuff talk from the critics that United States is in economic decline as “political hot air”. He also described ISIS militants as “killers and fanatics who have to be rooted out, hunted down and destroyed.”
The President will also call on Congress to end practicing drawing of congressional districts in order to enable politicians to pick their votes. In accordance to a copy of the speech released by The White House, Obama said that a lot of people of the United States think that the system is rigged for those who are the powerful and the rich. First Lady Michelle Obama was there for her husband’s final address and she was wearing mustard colored dress for this event. She was there with the members of Obama’s cabinet along with the justices of the United States Supreme Court.
This was the first State of the Union for PaulRyan in his new capacity as the House Speaker. Both he and the Vice President are no strangers as they debated during the 2012 vice presidential campaign as the nominees for their respective parties. Former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords along with Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders were also spotted on the House floor. During this time, The White House posted a video on Snapchat in which he was shown getting into his car to arrive at the United States House of Representatives. Ben Carson who is the Republican presidential candidate criticized Obama on Twitter for speaking while there are US military members held in Iran. In his tweet he mentioned “When President Obama takes the stage tonight, there will be 10 United States military members being held captive by Iran”. The speech did not mentioned anything about those members of United States Navy Sailors.