Ben Mangan: Obama’s Post-Presidential Speech?

Was President Obama’s State of the Union Address actually his first post-presidential speech — a framework for shaping the national agenda after he leaves office?

Ben Mangan, executive director of the Berkeley-Haas Center for Nonprofit and Public Leadership, argues that this is exactly the case in a commentary for Huffington Post.

“In my view, this particular SOTU kicked off what I imagine will be a life-long campaign to shape the country according to his values, and he’s decided to start building momentum now,” Mangan writes.

At the core of that post-presidential campaign, he argues, are the president’s continuing belief in the American Dream, tempered by hard data on widening inequality and the struggles of ordinary Americans.

“Obama will leave the White House a healthy, vibrant middle-aged guy with decades of work ahead of him,” he Mangan argues.  “At his core, he’s a campaigner and an organizer, and he’ll want to embrace his opportunity to shape the nation and the world as an ex-president.

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