President delivers solid speech

Published 4:46 am Monday, January 29, 2007

By Staff
Last week, President Bush came to the Capitol and delivered his seventh State of the Union address to the American people.
Given the uncertain climate - not only in Washington, D.C. - but throughout the world, the president did a solid job in addressing many of the top issues of the day while reporting the state of our union is strong.
He continued building upon a theme of calling on Congress to set aside differences in order to work together in accomplishing the work of the American people and building a brighter future.
That future, he said, starts with our growing economy, which is in its 41st month of uninterrupted job growth and has created 7.2 million new jobs. Nationally, the unemployment rate is 4.3 percent; however, Alabama's unemployment rate, 3.3 percent, is well below the national figure.
The president laid out an ambitious domestic agenda. He clearly challenged Congress to work towards solutions for a number of issues including our nation's energy, immigration, and health care problems.
For energy, the president asked Congress and America's scientists, farmers, industry leaders, and entrepreneurs to join him in pursuing the goal of reducing U.S. gasoline usage by 20 percent in the next ten years, a plan he calls - &#8220Twenty in Ten.”
According to the president, &#8220Twenty in Ten” will be accomplished in two ways: increasing the supply of renewable and alternative fuels by setting a mandatory fuels standard to require 35 billion gallons of renewable and alternative fuels in 2017 and reforming and modernizing corporate average fuel economy standards for cars and extending the current light truck rule.
Clearly, there is no subject more front and center than that of the war in Iraq and the ongoing war on terror. The president presented his resolve to defeat the terrorists who are working to increase their numbers and defeat us in Iraq. He stated, &#8220To win the war on terror, we must take the fight to the enemy.”
Earlier this month, the president presented his plan to deploy more than 20,000 additional soldiers and Marines to Iraq in order to secure Baghdad. Just last week, the expected new commander in Iraq, Lt. Gen. David Petraeus, testified before Congress of the need for this surge of troops.
Gen. Petraeus has twice served as a commander in Iraq and has received strong endorsements from senators on both sides of the aisle. He is regarded by many as one of the military's most talented officers, and I hope that his confirmation process moves through the Senate swiftly. The next six months are critical to the success of our mission in Iraq, and it is critical that he be in place to lead our troops in stabilizing Iraq.
I look forward to reviewing in greater detail each of the president's proposals in the weeks ahead.
New Web site launches
In an effort to provide the constituents of Alabama's First District with improved online services and information, we launched my new, official Web site last week. It can be accessed at
Among the many features, the new Web site includes detailed information on the following items: flag requests; U.S. Capitol tours; visiting Washington, D.C.; and dealing with federal bureaucracies.
Jo Bonner represents south Alabama in the U.S. House of Representatives.