In final State of Union, Obama aims to define his presidency

Daily News Article - January 12, 2016


NOTE to students: Read the information under "Background" and "Resources" below before answering the questions.

1. a) What is the State of the Union address?
b) When and where is the State of the Union given?

2. How is President Obama’s last State of the Union tonight expected to differ from his other State of the Union addresses?

3. a) What do Democrats want the President to use the address to do?
b) How do White House officials explain the President’s decision?
c) Do you think the President should make this part of his State of the Union? Explain your answer.

4. What issues are expected to be central to President Obama’s speech?

5. a) How does the Associated Press reporter describe both Democrats and Republicans’ view of President Obama’s strategy for fighting ISIS? (define the reporter’s descriptions)
b) Do you think this is a fair description? Explain your answer.

6. a) Which of the following issues do you think are most important for President Obama to focus on in his final State of the Union? Explain your answer.

b) Ask a parent what issues he/she thinks President Obama should focus on in his State of the Union, and to explain his/her answer.

CHALLENGE — Watch the State of the Union address and answer the following questions:

1.  Tone is the attitude a speaker takes towards a subject. What was the tone of President Obama’s 2016 State of the Union address?

2. What was the overall theme of the president’s speech?

3. List some of the things the President promised to do in his last year in office.

4.  Which issues of importance to the country did the President bypass altogether, or just mention briefly?

5.  What issue presented by President Obama was the most important to you?  Did any aspect of the speech disappoint you; inspire you?  Explain your answers.  (For the text and video of the 2016 State of the Union address,

6. a) Do you think the President is focusing on the correct issues? Explain your answer.
b) Ask a parent the same question.

7. Watch/read the Republican response to the President’s State of the Union at or What do you think of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s response?