The big question for me today is whether this president, upon his second swearing in, will diverge from the tradition of all past American presidents and instead use his inaugural address as an opportunity to attack his political opponents. After the commentary from David Plouffe over the weekend, and the president's divisive post election tone, I would not be surprised. Obama has Republicans on the run--they are now strategizing to avoid any confrontation over the debt ceiling in order to help their mid-term election prospects. (The consultants telling them that's a good idea should get the boot.) The president knows he has the upper hand. So will he use today's speech as a chance to bring the nation together, help "heal our wounds," or will he continue on the path he has charted out over the past four years, to destroy his opposition and fundamentally transform our nation? I'm betting, sadly, on the latter, and hoping I'm wrong.
Today is a day to come together as a nation--to revel in the uniqueness, in the very essence of our republic. This radical experiment by our founders--that people can be trusted to govern themselves. The notion that government's purpose should be to protect the God-given liberty of the citizenry. But today is not the time to close our eyes to efforts to diminish, in any way, the the sacred belief that power and authority come not from the government, but from the people. Our eyes, as we assume the best motives even in the face of overwhelming evidence, have been closed too long.
Even if the attacks come today--subtle or direct--or are delayed until the equally inappropriate opportunity of the State of the Union address, the American people will wake up, finally, and champion fidelity to the Constitution and the tenants of limited government: of, by, and for the people.