A Los Angeles Times analysis observes that Bush's proposals might have been "too modest to accomplish the broader challenge facing him: how to rescue the last quarter of his presidency from irrelevance and patch his tattered legacy… 'This represents the end of the Bush era," said Michael Tanner, a policy analyst for the Cato Institute... 'This speech shows that outside Iraq, he is increasingly irrelevant.'"
The Boston Globe: "There was no talk of bold initiatives, such as remaking Social Security, or blustery rhetoric that mirrored his famous construct 'axis of evil' -- a bow to his new political realities."
The Washington Post says Bush's approach "contrasted with the last two presidents to address an opposition Congress after their parties lost midterm elections. Ronald Reagan conceded 'serious mistakes' in 1987, as did Bill Clinton in 1995."
After opening his address with a gracious tribute to Pelosi, the San Francisco Chronicle says Bush "spent most of the next 49 minutes behaving as if the November election never happened." He "pitched a health care policy he knows stands no chance in a Democratic Congress, an education plan Democrats have already rejected and an energy policy that did little to wow his opponents."
Vice President Cheney gives an interview to CNN which will air later today.