A day after his historic second inauguration President Barack H. Obama kicks off the first work day of his new term. The 44th U.S. president used his inaugural speech on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to lay out an ambitious and progressive agenda. Much of the early analysis likened the speech to Former President Ronald Reagan’s first inaugural in 1981, when Reagan proclaimed “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” President Obama cast a similar, yet opposing, perspective, defending entitlements, making the first mention of gay rights in inauguration history, and addressing climate change. In his address, the president also took a not-so-veiled shot at some republicans – including former Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan – saying entitlement programs “do not sap our nation, they make us stronger,” and “do not make us a nation of takers.” He also discussed equal pay for women and reformulated his hopes for America’s place abroad. While his speech received praise from both sides, the president did not make mention of gun control, but the issue, along with immigration, are expected to figure prominently in his second term plans, and will likely make appearances during his State of the Union address next month. For now, President Obama must confront three fiscal deadlines, including raising the debt ceiling, which the House scheduled for a vote Wednesday. He also faces the twin foreign policy concerns of North Africa and the drawdown of U.S. troops in Afghanistan. We will look back at the president’s remarks and hopes and preview his second term challenges that lie ahead when we see you live from DC at noon ET on msnbc.
Michael Steele, Fmr. RNC Chairman/msnbc Political Analyst (@steele_michael)
E.J. Dionne, Columnist, The Washington Post (@ejdionne)
Michael Scherer, White House Correspondent, TIME (@michaelscherer)
Chuck Todd, NBC Political Director/MSNBC host “The Daily Rundown” (@chucktodd)
Ezra Klein, The Washington Post/msnbc Policy Analyst (@ezraklein)
Cecile Richards, President, Planned Parenthood (@cecilerichards) [DC Bureau]
Diane Derzis, Owner, The Jackson Women’s Health Organization [Mississippi remote]