By now you’ve heard all about President Obama’s speech on reducing the budget deficit. If you, like me, weren’t able to listen to it live, chances are you’ve heard enough of the speech (or maybe you read the text of it), as well as some sort of commentary on it, to form an opinion. After all, it’s been chopped into sound bites, parsed, and analyzed to death by both sides.
It’s actually pretty easy to have an opinion on Obama’s words. It’s easy to look at the ideas and plans the president laid out in the speech and make a decision on whether you agree with them or not. Let’s face it: the vast majority of analysis of the speech has centered around the specifics of it.
But let’s take a look at one aspect of the speech that hasn’t been spotlighted much: Obama’s quoting of Abraham Lincoln.
Here’s where the 44th president invoked the 16th:
From our first days as a nation, we have put our faith in free markets and free enterprise as the engine of America’s wealth and prosperity. More than citizens of any other country, we are rugged individualists, a self-reliant people with a healthy skepticism of too much government.
But there has always been another thread running throughout our history – a belief that we are all connected; and that there are some things we can only do together, as a nation. We believe, in the words of our first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, that through government, we should do together what we cannot do as well for ourselves.
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