President Obama made a bold and direct case for a progressive agenda in his second inaugural address. He emphasized the need for progressive policies to promote the benefit of the entire country rather than a privileged few.
“For we, the people, understand that our country cannot succeed when a shrinking few do very well and a growing many barely make it. We believe that America’s prosperity must rest upon the broad shoulders of a rising middle class. We know that America thrives when every person can find independence and pride in their work; when the wages of honest labor liberate families from the brink of hardship. We are true to our creed when a little girl born into the bleakest poverty knows that she has the same chance to succeed as anybody else, because she is an American, she is free, and she is equal, not just in the eyes of God but also in our own.”
Four years ago the inauguration was about changing course from the Bush years and offering new hope for bipartisanship. Now it’s about promoting and advancing progressive policies. The President has learned that bipartisanship only works with Republicans when you are negotiating from a position of strength. I’m actually more hopeful this time around because I believe the President is wiser, tougher, and will be able to do for Democrats what Reagan did for Republicans in the 80s and the 90s.