A Digital Recap of #SOTU

by Meg Storm

As most conservatives and Republicans expected, last night’s State of the Union proved to be nothing more than a continuation of the leftist rhetoric President Obama has been spewing for months on the campaign trail and beyond.

Instead of analyzing the content of the State of the Union address (during which President Obama attempted to justify his spending habits, fudged the numbers to make the economy seem a lot better off than it actually is, and talked about how he just wants everyone to pay his fair share), let’s take a look at a much more entertaining topic – how the internet responded to the night’s festivities.

Just a quick note on the history of the State of the Union: Article II, Section 3 of the United States Constitution requires the president to "from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” As a result, some version of the State of the Union has existed since President George Washington.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first to formally refer to the event as the “State of the Union,” though the term did not take hold until President Harry Truman’s address in 1947. Coincidently, Truman’s speech was also the first to be televised.

The State of the Union moved to primetime in 1966, when President Lyndon B. Johnson decided it would help him get a larger viewing audience. The 1966 State of the Union was also the first to receive a “response” from the opposition, with House GOP leader Gerald Ford giving the Republican’s side of the story.

As the State of the Union continued to try to keep up with the times, President George W. Bush’s 2002 address was the first to be streamed online. Two years later, Bush’s State of the Union became the first ever to be broadcast in HD. Over the last few years, given the rise of social media and President Obama’s success with tools like Facebook and Twitter, the State of the Union has graduated to the big leagues – receiving its very own Twitter hashtag, #SOTU, which makes it even easier for people to talk about the speech.

WhiteHouse.gov wasted no time asking for what they like to call “citizen response” to Obama’s remarks, launching the “Enhanced State of the Media” interactive experience.

The service allows viewers to read through a transcript of Obama’s speech, highlight their “favorite passage of the speech that is meaningful” to them, tell the President how they are “connected to the issue,” and then “share that part of the speech” with family and friends. How fun?

Additionally, the new “enhanced” video of the State of the Union includes graphs and charts to support the President’s claims. Based on a quick scanning of the video, the graphics do not seem to be based in any particular fact. Below is a screenshot from the part of the speech about deficit reduction:

On the Twitter front, #SOTU was trending nationally throughout the speech and into Wednesday morning. As usual, there was plenty of political commentary, fact checking, and jesting from the right and left.

With just a few hours to go before the big event, President Obama tweeted out a photo from his official account of him and his advisers prepping for the speech:

The White House also got in on the action, posting photos of the President with some of the more noteworthy quotes from the speech:

The Heritage Foundation, perhaps in response to the style of the White House tweets, also published photos of the President with some of the more ironic quotes of the night.

While President Obama was the primary focus of most the commentary, Republicans were by no means spared. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) was one star of the night. His demeanor throughout Obama’s speech was disinterested at best, and, because he was seated next to Senators Kirsten Gillibrand, Chuck Schumer, John McCain, and Lindsey Graham, Cruz got a lot of face time during the broadcast. Michelle Malkin tweeted this photo of Cruz:

Finally, perhaps the most “newsworthy” moment of night (based on the mainstream media’s coverage) came during Senator Marco Rubio’s (R-FL) delivery of the GOP response. During the already slightly awkward speech, Rubio apparently became parched and reached for a water bottle that seemed to be pretty far out of reach. It quickly became clear that this moment would be the only thing anyone would remember from the speech.

Immediately following the speech, Rubio made light of the situation, having his aid, Todd Harris, tweet out this photo, with the caption "I am now the proud owner of the most famous water bottle in American politics":

So there you have it. That's a quick recap of some of the more memorable digital moments from the night, which hopefully provided a respite from the endless analysis and dissection of the speech that is occupying just about every news outlet.

 

We've heard a lot about critical race theory lately, and for good reason: It's a racist ideology designed to corrupt our children and undermine our American values. But most of what we see are the results of a process that has been underway for decades. And that's not something the mainstream media, the Democrat Party, and even teachers unions want you to know. They're doing everything in their power to try and convince you that it's no big deal. They want to sweep everything under the rug and keep you in the dark. To fight it, we need to understand what fuels it.

On his Wednesday night special this week, Glenn Beck exposes the deep-seated Marxist origins of CRT and debunks the claims that it's just a harmless term for a school of legal scholarship. Newsweek opinion editor Josh Hammer joins to argue why we must ban critical race theory from our schools if we want to save a very divided nation.

Watch the full "Glenn TV" episode below:

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On the radio program Monday, Glenn Beck blasted the Democrats — and anyone else on the left — who have been so eager to open our southern U.S. border for the past several months, but also willing to turn a blind eye to the Cuban people in need of help today.

"While we are welcoming people from any country, all over the world, without any kind of information, and setting them into our country, putting them on American planes paid for by American taxpayers," Glenn began. "And our Coast Guard Cutters are turning these [Cuban] people away. Shame on you! Shame on you!"

Glenn said that he's "sick and tired" of hearing about "brave" leftist activists like Colin Kaepernick, who protest the America flag while wearing Che Guevara and Fidel Castro t-shirts. Meanwhile, the Cuban people are risking their lives by taking to the sea to escape their oppressive regime and come to America.

"Anybody who glorifies Che doesn't know their ass from their elbow. You can't call them a human rights activist. You're protesting the American flag, because you so deeply believe in the right to be free? And yet, you wear a Che T-shirt?" Glenn said.

Glenn went on to argue that, even though the left has "bastardized" the meaning of our country, he still believes America is the best nation on Earth. In fact, he'd give up his citizenship "in a heartbeat" if another country could prove to be better, more noble, and more free. But no other nation exists like ours, he said, which is why it's so imperative we fight for freedom here, in Cuba, and around the world.

Watch the video clip below to hear Glenn explain:

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There's a new "reality" spreading, and the mere act of questioning it has become incredibly dangerous, Wall Street Journal investigative journalist Abigail Shrier told Glenn on the most recent episode of "The Glenn Beck Podcast."

Shrier's book, "Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters," exposes the radical gender activism that — like critical race theory — has overtaken our children's schools and culture. But even worse, she warned, it could end your parental rights for good.

Shrier made it clear she is by no means "anti-trans," but simply speaking up against the extremes of this new "reality" has made her enemy No. 1 to many activists. Her book has been bashed so hard by the Left that Target has stopped selling it twice, Amazon once banned ads for it, and the American Booksellers Association even called sending it to others "a serious, violent incident."

In the clip below, Shrier explained why she believes "there may be no hope for the public school system."

"You have teachers behaving like activists across the country who have no interest in actually teaching. They believe their job is to remake your child," she asserted. "We're seeing so much evidence of that, I think it's fair to say that it may be too deeply rooted in the ideology being taught in public school. I'm not sure that the public school system is redeemable at this point."

Watch the video clip below for more or find the full podcast with Abigail Shrier here:

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What is actually in Texas' new GOP-led voting bill? Nearly every Texas House Democrat fled the state to block its passage, calling it racist and oppressive, and President Joe Biden backed them as well.

But Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Friday to set the record straight and call out the lies: All of these claims are "completely false." He also explained his promise to "arrest" the Texas House Democrats when they return to the Lone Star State.

"What is in the bill is completely different than what they're saying, what Kamala Harris is saying, what President Biden is saying. What's in the bill actually increases the number of hours that people have to vote in the state of Texas. In the state of Texas, we have at least 12 days of early voting, and we are adding hours to those days. And on top of that, we are giving people time off from work to be able to vote. Bottom line, we're making it easier to vote in the state of Texas," Gov Abbott explained.

"In comparison, Delaware — the state that President Biden votes in — has exactly zero hours of early voting," he added. "That said, there is one thing that we're doing in the state of Texas, and that is we're making sure we tighten the reins on mail-in ballots that can lead to voter fraud. And it's not me saying that. It's a federal judge, appointed by Barack Obama, in Corpus Christi, Texas, who wrote in a legal opinion that voter fraud occurs, quote, in abundance as it concerns mail-in ballots. We know. Texans know. There is fraud in mail-in ballots in the state of Texas. It must be fixed. That's one thing we're trying to do. That being said, all these claims that we're denying people the right to vote and yada, yada, yada, are completely false."

Abbott went on to discuss the much-debated voter ID laws in Texas and to explain why Democrats insist on calling basic voter ID requirements "racist."

"When Democrats do not have truth on their side, they resort to one single word and that is 'racism' ... Texas implemented voter ID almost a decade ago, and when we went through that fight, what word did they use? Racism," he said. "Guess what? After Texas imposed voter ID requirements in the state of Texas, there have been more people voting and more people of color who went to vote. Voting didn't get harder. It got easier and more abundant in the state of Texas. And so, once again, Democrats have absolutely no legal standing, other than to say, 'racism.'"

Glenn asked Gov. Abbott to explain his pledge to "arrest" the Democratic lawmakers that fled once they return to Texas.

"Let me explain how this works. So, whenever there is a break of quorum, which is what is happening now — meaning there is not a sufficient number of people who are showing up to the Texas House of Representatives for the Texas House to engage in business. Whenever there's a quorum break like that, the House issues what's called a 'call on the House.' And when that happens, the sergeant-at-arms is authorized to work with the Texas Department of Public Safety, to — you can call it arrest, apprehend, whatever you want to call it — any of the members who are not in the Texas House of Representatives and bring them to the Texas House where they will be 'cabined' with no ability to leave the Texas House chamber, without a permission slip from the speaker."

Watch the video clip below for more details:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution, and live the American dream.