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Roskam: Obama “uniquely unqualified” to deliver unity speech at State Capitol


WASHINGTON – President and former state Senator Barack Obama returned to Illinois' State Capitol in Springfield to address the Illinois legislature. U.S. Representative Peter J. Roskam served alongside Obama in the state senate from 2000 to 2004. 

Roskam didn't hold back his criticism of the president, who preached compromise and bi-partisan unity to the state lawmakers in his 60 minute address:

President Obama is uniquely unqualified to deliver this message and the Illinois legislature is uniquely unqualified to play host to a speech on bipartisanship. 

I served alongside Barack Obama in the state senate and have attempted to work with him during my time in Congress. One thing in particular I’ve noticed about the President is his utter incapacity to be reflective about the weaknesses of his worldview.

President Obama believes that the economy is a zero sum game – in order for one person to succeed, others must fail or be made to fail by the government. Over his entire career he has never veered off course from this governing philosophy despite disastrous results in both Springfield and Washington.

This president has raised the blame game to an art form. He believes all of his failures – and there have been many – are the fault of Congress, foreign leaders, or even the American people.

It’s not surprising the president doesn’t recognize the clarity of leadership Governor Rauner is trying to bring to Springfield. Speaker Madigan and Illinois Democrats have turned our state into a fiscal basket case. Grandiose speeches may help President Obama frame his legacy but they won’t help our state climb out of the hole his party has been digging for decades.

Roskam has been serving in the U.S. Congress since 2007. 


  1. Illinois’s problem is too many Politicians in the habit of making deals with each other. Deals which do most Illinoisans little good and often harm. We need fewer deals and a little more conflict to break up the cozy arrangements that have looted this State.

  2. Marvelous fact checking by Obama’s speechwriters crediting Harold Washington with the expression “Politics ain’t bean bag.”
    Author and journalist Finley Peter Dunne was responsible for the quotation which Washington was fond of using. It was from the “Mister Dooley” columns.

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