The Most Over-Rated Speech of the Year, Again
Author: Greg Valliere
February 7, 2023
THE STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS usually gives the incumbent president a little bounce in the polls, lasting for a week or two. For Biden and his advisers, this will be an opportunity to correct what they consider a major mis-perception.
THE PUBLIC THINKS BIDEN HASN’T GOTTEN MUCH DONE, but that simply isn’t true. In fact, most conservatives in this town think he has done too much. And the public is gloomy on the economy — Biden gets little credit for the surprisingly strong GDP and the red-hot labor market.
CONFRONTING THOSE PERCEPTIONS is the major goal of Biden’s speech; if nothing else, he needs to change a view among Democrats that they would prefer another nominee for the 2024 presidential race.
BEYOND THAT, WHAT WILL THE MARKETS LOOK FOR?
Will Biden sound conciliatory on the debt ceiling, offering to continue talks with Kevin McCarthy? Doubtful; Biden wants to make his points on the evils of not paying debts and he probably won’t indicate a willingness to compromise on spending restraint. That will come later; maybe talks will get serious by May.
OTHERWISE, IT WILL BE A WISH LIST TONIGHT, with little chance of enactment. For example — a Biden proposal to hike the tax on stock buybacks and billionaires will go nowhere; no tax hike is likely to make it though the GOP-controlled House for the next two years.
SO OUR ADVICE is to get your sleep. Despite the media and pundit hype, all of the issues worth following — Ukraine, immigration, crime, etc. — will be unchanged after this very predictable speech. The only excitement may be whether Biden is good for a gaffe or two.
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