Four Historic State of the Union Speeches and What Made Them Stick

A good State of the Union sets a course for the rest of a presidency and help define a legacy.

US President Bill Clinton acknowledges the applause as he starts his State of The Union address to the 105th Congress and the American people 27 January on Capitol Hill in Washington. Clinton defended the Social Security program, promoted a raise in the minimum wage, proposed improvements in education and asked Congress to approve a consumer bill of rights for medical care.

Photographer: JOE MARQUETTE/AFP/Getty Images

On Jan. 8, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson gave his first State of the Union address and said that “this administration today, here and now, declares unconditional war on poverty in America.”

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