Congressman David Schweikert
It is clear the president has no interest in bipartisanship. Tonight, we saw President Obama finish the same standard left-winged speech he started giving at the inauguration. We did not see a leader willing to work together to solve our economic crisis - we saw wedge politics at its best. This Administration's policies are creating poverty, dependency on government, high unemployment, and exploding debt and energy costs. The president reaffirmed his misguided belief that more government is the solution to everything. Unfortunately, it is a policy that will lead to more spending and more debt that American taxpayers cannot afford. Instead of pushing for more government, the president should focus on how we can reduce the size and cost of a federal government that continues to stifle the economic growth we need to ensure our nation's prosperity.
Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick
The State of the Union is more than a national moment to hear a president's priorities - it is an opportunity for leaders to find common ground. That's what I was looking for tonight, because jobs, education and economic growth should not be partisan issues.
Members of Congress may not always agree with the president or with each other. But tonight I saw opportunities where both parties can and should work together.
My district, like so many across our nation, needs a thriving middle class and stable communities. We need a diversified economy that ends our boom-and-bust cycle. And I believe we can get there by investing in infrastructure and manufacturing. We can get there by supporting education, training and emerging technology.
I hope that the president and my colleagues in Congress will work together on these types of efforts. And that includes our duty to responsibly deal with our debt and deficits. A meat ax approach to deficit cutting is reckless. Let's make thoughtful policy choices to cut the deficit in a fair, balanced way.
As Thomas Edison once said, 'Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and it looks like work.' We have an opportunity to unite and solve some big problems -- let's not miss it. Let's get to work.
Congressman Matt Salmon
Fourteen years ago, I sat in this chamber when President Clinton declared during his State of the Union address that the 'era of big government is over'. After listening tonight to President Obama's State of the Union, I can sum his speech up in two words: 'it's back.' More government and higher taxes are not the solutions to today's fiscal problems.
Currently, there are over one million fewer people working today than when President Obama first took office. More than 12.7 million people are facing unemployment. Fewer private sector jobs exist. Last year, the federal government ran a deficit of nearly $1.1 trillion, bringing President Obama's total to nearly $5 trillion.
Clearly, our state of the union under this President is troubling.
I agree with Senator Rubio and all conservatives that the source of our prosperity as a nation is free enterprise, not government spending, or stimulus funding masquerading as 'investment'.
We've proven before that a divided government can act in a fiscally responsible way, and, the need is far greater than ever now.
I share President Obama's hope that Republicans and Democrats can work together to find solutions to our nation's most challenging issues; however, the solution is certainly not more federal programs, more taxes and new ways to spend taxpayer money. I believe we need to work together to cut spending and balance our budget, reduce our massive deficits, encourage private sector job creation and make sure every American who wants a job can find one.
Congressman Paul Gosar
Talk is cheap and actions speak. While the President gave a well-scripted speech this evening he continues to ignore the reality of our state of the union. What our nation needs is less rhetoric from the president.
What the American people need and deserve is a budget, a plan to end deficit spending and an honest discussion about the difficult issues we face on immigration, crime prevention and energy.
When President Obama and Senate Democrats are ready to present a pathway to a balanced budget and tackle our crushing debt, then we can discuss the merits of the President's proposed initiatives and big-government 'investments'.