First reaction…

Bush spoke tonight about Iraq ahead of a vote in Congress to authorize the use of force to effect “regime change.” Recent polls show that a majority of Americans support–with qualifications–military action against Iraq for the purpose of removing Saddam Hussein. A president always speaks to multiple audiences. Two of the most important audiences tonight were Congress and those Americans who are still worried about military action. Bush delivered a low-key address full of deductive argument and emotional appeals. He looked and sounded like the leader of a superpower (due in large part to the low-key delivery), and this delivery sold the message. I’ll be surprised if his polls don’t jump and the Congress fails to give him the vote he wants (assured). I’ll have a more detailed analysis of the rhetorical features of this address on Presidential Campaign Rhetoric 2004 by Thursday afternoon.