Shortly after Obama’s State of the Union address ended media machines exploded with reactions. Republicans in general responded to the speech negatively overall citing his under-performance in job creation and over-zealous spending habits. Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels delivered the official Republican response which can be viewed here.
Despite these reactions the question remains of whether Obama’s State of the Union address helped or hurt his chance for re-election? Let’s ignore mainstream media and career politicians and focus on the data.
During his speech Obama’s Intrade price increased by .1 indicating that the probability of him winning the presidency increased by 0.1%. This data shows that Obama’s speech likely helped his campaign. On the flip side Newt Gingrich also experienced a .1 increase whereas Mitt Romney suffered a .2 decrease. No data was available for Ron Paul and Rick Santorum due to no trading on Intrade during the address.
The below graph illustrates the number of negative, neutral, and positive tweets regarding commonly used hash and @ tags during the State of the Union address.
The above graph seems to indicate that most Twitter users felt neural about the address with a slight leaning to the positive end of the spectrum. This indicates that overall Twitter users felt positive about the speech. Skeptical readers may disregard this data by claiming that the voting population doesn’t participate in Twitter. This isn’t true as evidenced in the following blog post.
Below is a word cloud illustrating the most frequently used words in the State of the Union address:
This cloud is interesting because it encapsulates the general message contained within President Obama’s speech.
Overall the data seems to suggest that Obama’s State of the Union address helped his campaign. If you missed the address you can watch it below.