â€œThe state of our union is strong,â€ President Obama said at the end of his last two states of the union, continuing a decades-long tradition of â€œstrongâ€ being the state of the union reported by the president. In 2009 and 2010 our union was strong. In each of George W. Bushâ€™s states of the union, the state of the union was strong. In 2004 and 2005 it was confident and strong. Bill Clinton announced the state of the union had never been stronger in 2000 (a claim repeated by Bush in 2002). George H.W. Bush echoed similar sentiments, that the state of the union would remain strong and sound, something even Jimmy Carter boasted in his last state of the union, delivered in written form at the end of his term in 1981. When was the last time a president leveled with the people and just said the state of the union was not good? Gerald Ford in 1975. That year, the state of the union was â€œnot good,â€ Ford admitted, though by 1976 it was â€œgetting betterâ€ and by 1977 it was â€œgood.â€
Will it again be stronger than itâ€™s ever been tomorrow night?