President Barack Obama has called on America’s divided political class to unite to meet the challenges of the future.
Speaking in his first State Of The Union address since the Democrats lost control of the House of Representatives to the Republicans, Obama invoked the 1960s ‘Space Race’ with the Soviet Union and appealed to Republicans to cooperate to create a wave of new industry and jobs.
‘‘This is our generation’s Sputnik moment. Two years ago, I said that we needed to reach a level of research and development we haven’t seen since the height of the Space Race. In a few weeks, I will be sending a budget to Congress that helps us meet that goal,’‘ Obama said.
But, many of the president’s opponents are calling for deep budget cuts to get to grips with the deficit. Despite that, Obama tried to convince his rivals to work for the national good.
‘‘New laws will only pass with support from Democrats and Republicans. We will move forward together or not at all. For the challenges we face are bigger than party, and bigger than politics,’ he told them.
An instant poll taken after the speech showed a rise in public support for the president’s policies, but the Republicans both in and outside of Congress might not be so easily convinced.