Local Reaction On President Obama's State of the Union Address
Murray Statement on President Obama's State of the Union Address
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE: "Tonight we heard a strong vision from President Obama for getting our economy back on track, getting our workers back on the job, and laying down a strong foundation for our country to continue leading the way in the 21st century economy. I believe that this vision is exactly what Washington state families need, and I am going to continue working with the President and my colleagues in Congress to enact it.
"I have heard from so many families and small business owners across Washington state who continue to struggle. While we certainly need to tackle the deficit and cut spending, I am not going to allow that to happen on the backs of Washington state students, veterans, and future growth.
"The importance of investing in Washington state's future cannot be overstated. From the Columbia River Crossing in Southwest Washington, to the North-South Freeway in Spokane, to the Mercer Street mess and mass transit throughout Seattle—we can't stop making the investments we need to continue innovating and continue competing.
"And as President Obama said tonight, we need to make sure that Washington state workers are getting the support they need not just to get back to work, but also to build the economy of the future. We must maintain our competitive edge by investing in our students, our workers, and the innovation that will pave a strong foundation for long-term economic growth. And we need to make sure the jobs and innovation of the future—like Washington state's aerospace industry—continues to thrive and that they stay right here in the United States.
"So I am not going to stop fighting for the local investments in Washington state that will keep our economy growing and will get workers back on the job. And I look forward to working with anyone who is interested in making sure America continues to lead the way in the 21st century economy."
Gov. Gregoire's response to President Obama's State of the Union Address
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE: "In tonight's State of the Union address, President Obama challenged every member of Congress and every American to keep America's place in the world through innovation, competition and education. The proposals he unveiled to create jobs and control spending echoed some of what we have done to solve the challenges in Washington's budget, like transforming government and tackling the programs that drive up costs year after year. The President is providing the strong leadership and bold direction that our economic recovery is demanding.
"America's economic future lays with the jobs that will power innovative, new industry. The President's focus on the jobs of tomorrow bodes well for our state. As a global leader in - and major exporter of - technology, aerospace, life sciences, clean energy and other 21st Century industries, Washington state is well positioned to compete-and win-in the new, global economy. I was especially pleased at President Obama's call for Congress and all Americans to work together as our nation rebuilds its economy and forges a more prosperous future for our children and communities.
"Over the past few weeks, I have announced proposals that would reduce unemployment taxes for businesses, help more unemployed workers retrain for new careers and unify Washington's education system so there is more focus on students and less on bureaucracy. These initiatives will improve our state's competitiveness at home and abroad and offer families, workers and businesses a path to emerge stronger from this recession."
Cantwell Reaction to State of the Union Address
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE: "The President tonight outlined a strong vision for how our nation can win the innovation economy and ensure the next generation of American prosperity. I was pleased by his emphasis on workforce and education investments in our workers, his support for innovation, particularly for transitioning to a cleaner and more diverse energy system, and his commitment to getting America's fiscal house in order. Like President Obama, I am tired of America inventing many of the new clean energy technologies in solar, wind, even nuclear – only to see other countries reap the rewards and jobs that comes from manufacturing these products. Now is the time for Congress to put partisanship and old stale ideas aside and work together to change the future and capture the great market opportunity before us. Congress has hard work ahead and I hope that the spirit of cooperation we felt tonight will continue."
McMorris Rodgers Reacts to President Obama's State of the Union Speech
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE: Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference, released the following statement tonight in response to President Obama's State of the Union speech:
"While I am encouraged by many portions of the President's speech – and I remain hopeful that tonight will prove to be a turning point in getting Congress and the White House on the same page in dealing with our nation's challenges – I would have preferred to see the President display a greater commitment to using free-market solutions to revive our economy and put our fiscal house in order.
"As we saw on November 2, the American people are not satisfied with the status quo, and continuing the ‘spend, borrow, and bailout' policies of the past two years is irresponsible and unsustainable. After 20 straight months of at least 9% unemployment – the longest streak since the Great Depression - we need to create a climate where small businesses have the confidence to grow and create jobs again – a climate that requires repealing and replacing the government takeover of health care and putting our fiscal house in order.
"In the ‘Pledge to America,' House Republicans showed they were listening to the American people by promising to roll back federal spending to Fiscal Year 2008 levels or less. We are on course to keep that pledge. We should also pass a pair of Constitutional amendments - one that would limit federal spending as a percentage of the U.S. economy (GDP) and another that would require a balanced budget every year.
"Balancing the budget isn't a liberal or conservative issue. When families in Eastern Washington balance their budgets, they don't consider it a liberal or conservative policy; it's just a requirement of life. And if the President will join us in that attitude as part of a ‘new spirit of cooperation,' I know we can make great progress on reducing the deficit and improving the economy in 2011."
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