Capitol Thoughts
Capitol Thoughts Archive

Building a Strong Foundation by Janaye Ingram

Jan 27, 2012

I’ve never built a house from the ground up, but I know some people who have done it. Before a single pipe is laid, or a single brick is in place, the very first thing that has to happen is that you need to have a blueprint. I’ve never heard of anyone building a house without having one and I can’t imagine that you just start throwing stuff up all willy nilly. There needs to be a guide to say how one room will connect to another, where the doors and windows will go, and how the layout of the house overall will be. Whenever you hear someone talking about building a house they say they want to make sure that the foundation is strong. I would say that the blueprint is the real foundation for any house. Without a strong blueprint, a house on solid ground might still fall to pieces. But with a strong blueprint, I’ve seen a few sandcastles that could withstand a few mighty winds.

This week, our President laid out his blueprint for America to get back to the country we’ve always been. Our country was like a nice house that was rocked and ripped apart by a huge tornado – the housing collapse. That tornado brought with it a tsunami that flooded the land with unemployment, lost retirements, and a few other issues. After all was said and done, there was a lot of cleaning up to do. But we’re getting there. We see recovery; the President told us about the progress we’ve made in his address. A lot has been accomplished in three years even if all some people see is the rest of the mess that we s till have to clean up. There are plenty of people who know how much progress we’ve made even if we still have our hard hats on and are hard at work trying to make the blueprint come to life.

Since last week, I’ve been in meetings and having discussions about the President’s State of the Union address. On the night of the speech, I was at the White House for the White House “TweetUp” event. Prior to the President’s speech, we were told a little bit about what we’d hear and what we should expect for the evening. Then as we watched the President’s speech, we saw a split screen that gave us more information on what the President was talking about and we were able to share those facts on twitter. Immediately following the speech, we were

greeted by a panel that consisted of senior administration officials and were allowed to ask questions from our twitter and Facebook followers and friends. On Wednesday, I was back at the White House for a special event with the Vice President. That meeting was kicked off with another panel, all focused on bringing real understanding to the plan that the President laid out. We can’t possibly help rebuild if we don’t understand the blueprint.

Since the President’s address, people have been able to ask questions and for anyone just finding out, there’s still time. The White House has had marathon hours for the week and people can visit their website for the remaining hours this week. And for all of those on twitter, questions can be asked there as well by including the #WHchat and following @WHLive. Next week, the President will be answering some questions via YouTube. There have also been calls that are taking place with people who prefer to hear about the plan through the more traditional method. All of this is in an effort to truly engage people. In order for our country to continue rebuilding, we need all hands on deck. We need unity, we need to tighten up our boots and pull out the hammer. We still have work to do, but with a great blueprint in front of us, we’re on the right path to rebuilding our foundation.