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State Of The Union

ENTERTAINMENT
January 28, 2014 | By Patrick Kevin Day
Tuesday night's State of the Union address from President Barack Obama will get a reality TV guest star with the presence of "Duck Dynasty" cast member Willie Roberston. Robertson, who serves as the chief executive of the Robertson family business, Duck Commander, and appears along with his father, uncle and brothers on the A&E reality series, will be attending the speech as the guest of freshman Rep. Vance McAllister (R-La.). In a statement to the media, McAllister said, "I am proud to have my close friend, constituent and small business owner, Willie Robertson, attend tonight's State of the Union Address as my special guest.
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NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Daniel Rothberg, This post has been corrected. See below for details.
WASHINGTON - Two Boston bombing survivors and Jason Collins, a 12-year NBA player who came out as gay last year, will sit among the White House's guests at Tuesday's State of the Union speech. Accompanying First Lady Michelle Obama, they join a list that includes Obamacare proponent Gov. Steve Beshear (D-Ky.), the first female CEO of General Motors and a first responder to a tornado that ripped through Moore, Okla., in May, the White House announced. Presidents frequently cite guests in the first lady's box to reinforce their State of the Union themes.
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON -- Republicans accused of waging a "war on women" attempted to send a message to the nation with the selection of Washington state Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the top woman in GOP leadership and a mother of three, to deliver the party's response Tuesday night to President Obama's State of the Union address. The House GOP, though, will send another message just hours before the president visits the House chamber -- voting on a bill called the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortions Act, which seeks to expand a prohibition on the use of federal dollars to pay for abortions.
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By David Lauter
WASHINGTON - President Obama's sixth speech on the state of the union will spotlight many issues, but more than anything may illuminate the vast gap between his policy ambitions and the tools he has to achieve them. The president made the ambition clear last month, when he referred to a “dangerous and growing inequality and lack of upward mobility” in the United States  as the “the defining challenge of our time.” His overriding goal, he has said in speeches and interviews, is to reverse the trend in which incomes for most Americans have stagnated since the late 1970s while the share going to the wealthiest has soared.
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Christi Parsons and Kathleen Hennessey, This post has been updated with the latest developments.
WASHINGTON - Hoping to lay a politically bruising year to rest, President Obama on Tuesday declared a “year of action” in which he said he would work with lawmakers when he could, but would sidestep them to move proposals to help low- and middle-income families share in the economic recovery. In his State of the Union address, Obama promised to flex his power to boost wages, protect the environment and channel resources to education, starting with an executive order to raise the minimum wage for federal contractors.
NATIONAL
January 28, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey and Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON - Hoping to leave a bruising year in the rearview mirror, President Obama vowed Tuesday to work with Congress when possible but around it when necessary to push ahead with a series of mostly modest steps aimed at helping low- and middle-income families share in the economic recovery. In his State of the Union address, Obama shook off his earlier recession-era rhetoric to envision an increasingly robust economy. He warned Congress not to impede that progress, and swore he would work to shrink the gap between rich and poor left by the years of job losses and depressed wages.
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Cathleen Decker
President Obama will stand before members of Congress and a national television audience tonight to deliver his sixth annual State of the Union address. It's pretty safe to assume it will include the following: Paeans to the American dream, from the particular vantage of the middle class. Support for energy independence, education and changes in immigration laws. A short nod to international affairs, the winding down of wars abroad and the continued pursuit of terrorists. A laundry list of desires that the president knows will probably never see the light of day, even if all sides genuflect to the everyday Americans arrayed in the House chamber as witnesses, a theatrical touch of guilt-mongering employed since the era of President Reagan.
OPINION
January 28, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
Two themes dominated the advance speculation about President Obama's State of the Union address: that he would hammer away at income inequality and joblessness, and that, despairing of cooperation with congressional Republicans, he would defiantly trumpet what he could accomplish unilaterally. Fortunately, the forecasts were only half right. Obama indeed emphasized the importance of strengthening and enlarging the middle class, which he said had been battered not only by a concentration of wealth at the top but by "massive shifts in technology and global competition.
OPINION
January 28, 2014 | Doyle McManus
The rap against President Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday was that his agenda, once ambitious and transformational, has suddenly turned modest. Instead of grand bargains and sweeping change, the president proposed holding a summit meeting on working families and extracting a promise from colleges to admit more low-income students - not exactly sweeping solutions to middle-class stagnation and college debt. What happened to the visionary politician who promised that his inauguration would mark the moment the rise of the oceans began to slow?
NEWS
January 28, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON - Saying it's the "defining project of our generation," President Obama will call on Americans on Tuesday night to try to bridge the gap between rich and poor in a State of the Union speech that will focus on restoring the promise of upward mobility and economic opportunity.  "Today, after four years of economic growth, corporate profits and stock prices have rarely been higher, and those at the top have never done better.  But average...
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