Michigan lawmakers react to State of the Union
On Tuesday night, President Donald Trump delivered his first State of the Union address, in which he heralded a "new American moment."
After the speech, local and state lawmakers from around Michigan released statements. Here are some of those statements in full:
Republican Representative Justin Amash (MI - 3rd District):
Republican Representative Bill Huizenga (MI - 2nd District):
Democratic Senator Gary Peters:
“At a time when America is deeply divided, it is more important than ever that Members of Congress from both parties come together to tackle the big challenges facing our nation. I hope President Trump will make good on his commitment tonight to work with both Democrats and Republicans to pass bipartisan legislation that will rebuild our crumbling infrastructure and support hard-working American families.
“As the Ranking Member of the Surface Transportation Subcommittee, I’m focused on promoting federal investments to upgrade and modernize our roads, bridges and ports, expand rural broadband networks, and lay the groundwork for smart transportation like connected and self-driving vehicles.
“Although President Trump campaigned on a promise to improve infrastructure, I’m concerned that his barebones infrastructure proposal lacks meaningful federal investments and instead forces cash-strapped state and local governments to make up for the lack of strong federal support or shifts the burden to American people through tolls and fees.
“A robust infrastructure package has the potential to drive innovation and create good-paying jobs in Michigan and across the country. I was honored to have Mike Jackson, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights, as my guest this evening to highlight the importance of protecting prevailing wage laws that ensure skilled workers get a fair wage and taxpayers get their money’s worth when infrastructure projects are completed on budget and on time.
“Ensuring workers can earn middle class wages should be part of a comprehensive approach to economic growth that includes boosting our manufacturing sector and fighting unfair trade practices. We need to enforce trade laws and help small businesses take action to protect American workers and ensure our international competitors are not using unfair practices to undercut fair wages, manipulate their currency or restrict access to American-made products in their markets.
“Moving forward, I hope that the President and Republicans in Congress will work in a bipartisan way to address these important economic issues, which means crafting a forward-looking bill that makes significant investments in the critical infrastructure without undercutting fair wages.”
Democratic Representative Dan Kildee (MI- 5th District):
“The American people deserve less talk and more action regarding the big challenges we face as a country. My constituents want real leadership from the President and action by Congress to get things done.
“Over a year into the President’s term, it is completely unacceptable to continue funding the government just weeks at a time. Short-term bills hurt our military readiness and inject uncertainty into our economy.
“I was disappointed that the President failed to address the epidemic of gun violence in tonight’s address. Gun violence affects every town in America. I was honored to have Flint Pastor Hawkins as my guest tonight, who tragically lost both of his sons to gun violence. President Trump and Congress need to do more to address senseless gun deaths and build safer communities.
“I want to work with the President on infrastructure. The ongoing Flint water crisis is a tragic example of what happens when we ignore our aging infrastructure. To fix our crumbling roads, bridges and water systems, we must make big and bold investments. The American Society of Civil Engineers gives our infrastructure a D+ rating and estimates America has a $3 trillion infrastructure deficit. The White House proposal—$200 billion over 10 years—is a drop in the bucket compared to the actual federal investments needed nationwide. If we fail to go big on infrastructure, we will hold back our economy, especially with countries like China already outspending us.
“After tonight’s speech, Congress should act immediately on a bold infrastructure plan that addresses America’s true infrastructure needs.”
Democratic Senator Debbie Stabenow:
“Tonight, I was honored to be joined by Michigan Medal of Honor recipient and Vietnam veteran Jim McCloughan at the State of the Union Address. His participation is a reminder to all of us that we cannot take our values as a country or the people who keep us safe for granted. I remain committed to working with Republicans, Democrats, and the White House to get things done for Michigan families.”
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley:
"President Trump focused on the past year of working to build a safe, strong and successful America in his speech tonight. We should be proud of the fact that Michigan is at the heart of America's resurgence, and, as the President said, the Motor City’s engines are revving again.
I also appreciated how the President stressed the importance of an all-hands-on-deck approach to the opioid crisis which has become a national emergency, as it is now claiming more lives than car accidents.
I look forward to working with President Trump to continue to help Michigan and our country achieve success in the coming years.”
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