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Facing a deeply divided Congress and waning job approval ratings, President Barack Obama will declare 2014 his “year of action” Tuesday evening and reassert his willingness to use executive orders to push his agenda during his much-anticipated State of the Union address.
“We’re not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help they need,” Obama said earlier this month, during his first Cabinet meeting of the year. “I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone.”
The President’s threat of executive action is a far cry from the conciliatory tone he championed during his first presidential run in 2008. During his first five years in office, the president issued fewer executive orders than any other president in more than 100 years, New York Magazine reported.
While the tone of Obama’s address may sound familiar — and, in some cases, ritualistic — he’s expected emphasize his desire to raise the federal minimum wage, amend retirement programs for workers, overhaul the nation’s immigration policy and expand preschool education, according to the AP.
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