PAT BUCHANAN: The president is a fine speaker, and I really was looking for something uplifting. I've read speeches, I've worked on inaugural speeches -- I remember both of Lincoln's, and Kennedy's, and FDR's.
[Lincoln's] second inaugural is one of the greatest -- it's far better than the Gettysburg Address, in my view. But let me say this, the president, he was not uplifting. It was not really poetry; it was prose and part of it was pedestrian, and I think part of it was deeply partisan. And I think he missed a golden opportunity. The whole country is watching him and he should've uplifted the whole country.
This is a cross between a State of the Union speech with an agenda and a partisan rally given to the DNC. And so, I think, the president lost a real opportunity. Look, they usually talk about what? When I was a kid, Lexington and Concord and Bunker Hill. What was he talking about? Stonewall. That's a barroom brawl in Greenwich Village in 1969, when cops were hassling gays and their bar, and the gays fought back and threw them all out. Does that belong in a presidential inaugural?
BUCHANAN: Sometimes the president tries and does take his sort of up-the-mountain-top. But, I think again, we were talking about Dickerson speaking his mind. What came out of this speech by the president is a deeply partisan, who has decided, 'Look, I've tried to work with these characters. I can't do it. Now we're going to the mattresses in one issue after another: global warming, gun control, you name it. And I'm going to do battle with them. And if I lose, at least history will say that I fought these battles and history is on my side and the issues we got are going to win one day. So, that's exactly what I'm going to do.' (On the Record, January 21, 2013)