Ark. delegation pans Obama speech to nation
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Reaction to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address by members of Arkansas' congressional delegation:
Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark.
"Overall, I'm disappointed with the President's State of the Union address because he was heavy on rhetoric, but light on specifics about how we can move our country forward.
"I've always said that I'll work with the President when I think he's right, but oppose him when I think he's wrong. That's why I've opposed his policies on gun control, the Keystone Pipeline, military action in Syria, regulatory overreach on our farms - to name a few - and why I'll continue to oppose his agenda when it's bad for Arkansas and our country.
"I had hoped he would strike a more bipartisan tone because, if recent history shows anything, red vs. blue is dead end politics. We must work together if we want to get things done and strengthen our economy."
Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark.
"President Obama's policies have resulted in 5 million Americans losing their health insurance under Obamacare, a stalled economic recovery, high unemployment, and increased income inequality. These are problems he created. We need to ask ourselves, are we better off today?
"The President continues to ignore the results and consequences of the failed policies of his presidency. While he is calling for a 'year of action,' his intention is clear - to circumvent Congress. Pursuing executive actions to push through his agenda is a troubling trend. The American people sent their elected officials to Washington to represent their needs and the President should not ignore their voices. ...
"I'm ready to act on the behalf of all Arkansans, and all Americans, to institute real reforms to ensure a social safety net for those most in need, create opportunities for workers, address our ever-growing debt, and restore our standing in the world. I call on the President to start solving these problems instead of creating new ones."
Rep. Tim Griffin, R-Ark.
"The President promises to make this year one of action, but getting things done will require more than just words. In his State of the Union address, he again invited critics of Obamacare to suggest ways we can improve our health care system, but 50 days later, I'm still waiting for his response to my letter detailing nine key proposals.
"On this issue and others, it's time for President Obama to step up and work with Congress to make things happen. My colleagues and I in the House are also willing to work with him to grow the economy and spur job creation, by approving critical infrastructure projects like the Keystone pipeline and passing tax reform that makes our code fairer, flatter and simpler. With so many Americans hurt by Obamacare or struggling to find work, I hope President Obama means what he says and will turn his words into real action."
Rep. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.
"We heard more of the same empty promises from President Obama in the State of the Union. But what we didn't hear was an apology for Obamacare, his unworkable law that's making health care more expensive and life harder for Arkansans. Real solutions won't come from more of President Obama's big government policies, Arkansans deserve a leader who will fight to get government out of the way, cut our deficit, and rein in spending."
Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Ark.
"Tonight, Arkansans heard from the President about his priorities for our nation. Unfortunately, he continues to avoid addressing the biggest problem holding back economic growth_the ever-growing debt crisis. It is sad that President Obama continues to insist that it makes sense to rush ahead with trillions of dollars in new entitlement spending while Social Security and Medicare remain in fiscal distress, and the national debt is hurtling toward unsustainable levels increasing economic uncertainty."
Rep. Steve Womack, R-Ark.
"Tonight, President Obama called for a year of action and asked whether we in Congress are going to "help or hinder" America's progress. Unfortunately, I'm afraid our nation can't take much more of the top-down, government-expanding "action" and "progress" for which he's calling. I know for certain that Arkansas's Third District can't; I hear it from you, my constituents, day after day.
"You have told me you need policies that allow you to hold the keys to your success instead of promoting the status quo, that grow the economy and not the federal government, that enable you to create jobs rather than make doing so a disincentive, and that empower you to achieve your goals and the American dream without holding them back with red tape. That's what we've been working on in the House, and that's the America to which I'm committed. I will continue to work with my colleagues - and hopefully President Obama - to find solutions to these problems - the problems you face - and to create more opportunity and a stronger America."Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.