Here’s John Kline’s reaction to tonight’s SOTU:

Since the President took office two years ago, he and Congressional Democrats have overseen the largest budget deficit in the history of our nation, driving the national debt to a staggering $14 trillion. While the nation suffers from 20 straight months of unemployment above 9 percent, Washington has been on an unsustainable job-killing spending spree. After listening to the President’s remarks, I hope his actions match the rhetoric we heard tonight.

“In the first weeks of the new Congress, House Republicans have demonstrated that they are listening to the American people and leading by example: we have cut our own budgets by 5 percent, repealed ObamaCare, and rolled back non-defense government spending to 2008 levels.

“This needs to be a Congress focused on jobs and the economy. One way my Republican colleagues and I have demonstrated our resolve to restore America’s fractured fiscal house is by banning earmarks. I was pleased to hear the President is following our lead in putting an end to wasteful pork-barrel projects.

“As the Chairman of Education and the Workforce Committee, I am pleased the President highlighted education reform as one of his priorities. As I did last week when Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and I visited Crystal Lake Elementary School in Lakeville, I am continuing to seek input from principals, teachers, parents, and students on what is working – and what is not working – at the school level and whether federal policies are supporting or hindering the work schools across the country are doing to ensure students are prepared to succeed.

“Later this year, in its second-largest deployment since World War II, the Minnesota National Guard will send more than 2,400 troops – the famed “Red Bulls” – to the Middle East. As a member of the House Armed Services Committee and a veteran of the Marine Corps, I was pleased to hear the President reiterate his commitment to winning the war against Islamist extremists. Through initiatives like “Beyond the Yellow Ribbon,” we must ensure we take care of our sons and daughters in uniform, and their families.

“I encourage the Administration and Congressional Democrats to join Republicans in showing we are serious about restoring trust between the American people and those elected to represent them. I encourage Washington to heed the calls of the American people to do what we were sent here to do, provide security and freedom for our country, restore economic certainty, and enable America’s job creators to put our nation back to work.

Minnesota Republican Party Chairman Tony Sutton hit the right note with this statement:

In spite of the soaring rhetoric we heard in tonight’s State of the Union address, the fact is the Obama economic agenda just isn’t working for the American people. President Obama promised that the ‘stimulus’ would create or save 3.5 million jobs but in the two years since its passage, 2.1 million jobs have been lost. President Obama promised that the unemployment rate would not rise above 8 percent with the stimulus, but the national employment rate now stands at 9.4 percent. After two years of record deficit spending and with the national debt now topping a staggering $14 trillion, it is past time President Obama and Democrats finally got serious about cutting spending.

“A ‘freeze’ just won’t cut it and it is too little, too late. Unless we roll back the spending now, we will be wandering for a long time in a frozen wasteland of an economy with slow growth, high unemployment and nothing but a mountain of debt to show for it. To that end, President Obama should embrace Republican calls to cut, not just ‘freeze’ spending, to spur private sector job growth. Our children and grandchildren deserve no less,” said Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton.

After 2 years of reckless spending,NOW Obama wants to freeze spending? It’s time for real cuts.

Here’s U.S. Sen. John Barrasso’s statement:

Americans have grown familiar with the President’s regular promises to reduce the debt, cut spending and grow our economy. Yet each year his Administration spends more money, grows Washington and makes it harder for the private sector to create new jobs. Spoken promises have quickly transformed into broken promises.

Tonight, the President promised again to focus on the economy and cut wasteful Washington spending. Americans understand that tomorrow’s actions matter more than tonight’s speech. If the President is serious about improving our economy, his rhetoric must finally match his record.

To summarize using Clinton War Room terms: It’s the actions, Stupid.

Speaking of stupid, this is the most foolish statement of the night, compliments of Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak:

To Rep Bachman: Stop spending money like the billions on the Iraq War you got us into?

What a blithering idiot. Rep. Bachmann was a state senator when President Bush, with Congress’s approval, took us to war. Then again, R.T. Rybak doesn’t care about facts.

Here’s a key portion of U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter’s reaction to President Obama’s speech:

As the leader of the party wedded to wealth redistribution and culpable for this massive expansion of government’s power and price, the President insists on the oxymoronic goal of a “smarter” and “leaner” big government. Beneath the cant, he still contends the solutions to globalization’s economic and social challenges are more government, including an increased collusion between big government and big business; and, implicitly, more big government control over our decisions and money.

The recurring thought that kept running through my head was that, after each sentence about America’s greatness, President Obama would return with a plea for more government. Those things don’t fit together.

Paul Ryan said it best during his response to President Obama’s speech when he said that it isn’t a coincidence that Congress’s approval rating is at its lowest when government is its most intrusive. That nails it spectactularly.

The American people don’t want government telling them what to do and when to do it. They want to be masters of their destiny. This president either hasn’t figured that out or has figured it out and is proceeding his direction anyway.

Either way, tonight’s speech was a lost opportunity of immense proportions. President Obama could’ve framed the fight for his re-election. Instead, he gave us a conflicted speech that didn’t win back independents and gave his 2008 supporters reason for buyers remorse.

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3 Responses to “SOTU Reaction”

  • eric z. says:

    Obama’s need is not to “win back independents” it is to win back his core of progressive minded people who are highly disappointed with how much of a Republican clone he has been. As bad as Clinton was that way, and it’s a charade on both sides to pretend otherwise and that there’s much difference between people such as Kline and the GOP and Obama, except which pack divides present spoils and feeds more at the trough.

    Obama has been Bush-lite.

    That’s his problem.

    No credibility with progressives.

    Different question, is it as appears, too early for any ringing about GOP hopefuls in 2012? You’ve not said much at all that way and I know you had opinions going into the 2008 selection process.

    Is it waiting to see if TP develops a prayer of a chance to get a VP choice, or that the issue of the moment seems more compelling.

    I don’t see TP as credible for anything but running for VP; and then the question – would he help or hurt the ticket.

    Any thoughts about when you would see a more appropriate time to analyze such things? Mid-year after the legislative session ends; fourth quarter, 2011?

    Even later? And I recall you had a strong liking for Fred Thompson.

    Was Thompson a one hit wonder, getting a nod but no respect while the anti-Bush feelings swept that 2008 election, or might he be seriously in the hunt for 2012?

    If you get time to think it over and publish, it would prove interesting to me at least, and probably to other readers.

  • Gary Gross says:

    If you think you can win without independents, God bless you. You’ll get about 42-45 percent of the vote.

    It’s important to understand that the U.S. isn’t a progressive nation. Never has been, never will be. If you want to keep advertising that you’re a progressive, then it’s best to prepare for 2-3 more bad electoral cycles. PERIOD.

    Two years ago, pundits were asking who was THE leader of the Republican Party. I kept saying that I couldn’t care less, that I was focusing on 2010. DFL pundits kept questioning my sincerity on the issue. Despite their questioning, I’ve maintained that focus. Now that we’re past the midterms, I’ll focus on the next election. If Obama aggressively pursues the agenda he outlined last night, almost any of the GOP candidates will be able to defeat him.

    Right now, Americans passionately want spending cut & not by a little bit. President Obama’s response was to announce a spending freeze. President Obama’s approval ratings have gone up. Within 3 months, that trend will be reversed because people hate O’Care, vehemently disagree with freezing spending & hate seeing him proposing essentially another stimulus program to get the economy going. These things have FAILED MISERABLY!!!

    The most recent article I read said that, whoever the GOP presidential nominee is, the GOP nominee starts with 248 electoral votes, with Obama leading slightly & with a handful of votes still up for grabs. After last night’s speech, I suspect that’s tightened up even further.

    Fred Thompson won’t run again but I’d love seeing him be the VP nominee because he’s a brilliant man. I expect either Mike Pence, Newt or Mitch Daniels to be the GOP nominee, with TPaw having the opportunity to win if he does well in Iowa.

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