If listening to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address last night, you got the strange sense that you had heard some of the President’s talking points before, you certainly aren’t alone. At the offices of Personal Liberty Digest™, staff conversations about the speech were peppered with comments about vague Republican tones which were noticeable in portions of the speech that were not regurgitations of the President’s own rhetoric from past years.
Staff writer Ben Bullard notes in the opening paragraphs of his analysis of Obama’s State of the Union address (emphasis added):
President Barack Obama delivered a State of the Union address last night that reflected a parallel-universe vision of America very different from the one most of us inhabit in the present day. It’s almost as though he had this speech written five years ago, on the cusp of taking his first Oath of Office, and had to redact and revise swaths of visionary optimism to save face after the embattled 5th year he just completed. It was a vainglorious, self-indulgent victory lap in an empty, echoing stadium.
Some of his promises sounded very Republican, borrowed from conservative critics. At other times, he took credit for things that are either demonstrably unsuccessful or, where successful, can’t be attributed to a hand up from the government – and certainly not from his.
Fox News’ Megyn Kelly affirmed Bullard’s assertions shortly after the President’s speech in an interview with a former George W. Bush official. It turns out that, not only were portions of the speech probably written five years ago, but other parts—some of those with the Republican tinge—were written closer to seven years ago, for Bush’s 2007 State of the Union.
Former Bush Speech writer Marc Thiessen, the author of Bush’s 2007 speech, told Kelly that it appears as though “Barack Obama has gone from blaming George W. Bush to plagiarizing George W. Bush.”
Kelly: Our next guest says he liked the president’s speech in some ways – because he wrote something very similar for President Bush back in 2007. Former presidential speechwriter Marc Thiessen, now with AEI, joins me now from Washington. Did the president crib off of George W. Bush, is that what you’re saying?
Thiessen: Yeah, it was eerily familiar. There were lines like, “Our job is to help Americans build a future of hope and opportunity. A future of hope and opportunity begins with a growing economy. A future of hope and opportunity requires that all our citizens have affordable and available healthcare. Extending opportunity and hope depends on a stable supply of energy.” All of that came from the 2007 State of the Union Address by George W. Bush. So, Barack Obama has gone from blaming George W. Bush to plagiarizing George W. Bush.
Kelly: Did you the write that speech? Is that why it was familiar to you?
Thiessen: I was the lead writer on that, yeah. That was the first state of the union that I was the lead writer on…
It remains to be seen if MSNBC and other liberal media will attack the President with the same vigor it picked apart Senator Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) speeches and books following revelations that the lawmaker had failed to cite his sources from time to time.
H/T: Truth Revolt