What should President Obama say in his annual State of the Union address? The chasm between the rich and poor has widened and most Americans have no means of crossing it. Wages have stagnated, and far too many of America’s workers come home from their jobs and still find themselves unable to provide for their families. Our infrastructure is crumbling and our trade policies bow to corporate interests at the expense of working families and our environment. Some 11 million immigrants contribute to our economy yet live in fear that they’ll be torn from their families. Weakened labor laws have damaged workers’ rights to organize and collectively bargain for a chance at a middle-class life, and our values prevent us from supporting our long-term unemployed when they need it most.
The American Dream isn’t reserved solely for the 1%. The president can deliver a State of the Union that addresses all Americans by explaining how sound policy can shrink economic inequality, create good jobs and put more workers on the path toward a middle-class life. Here’s how: