As might be expected, Democratic lawmakers hailed Barack Obama’s State
of the Union performance while Republicans sharply disagreed.
“I thought it was just terrific," said Senator Barbara Boxer of
California. "I think what he did in this speech was to have an adult
conversation with the Congress and the American people.”
Related - Obama Touts Economic Plan in State of the Union Address
“I did not think it was one of his stronger speeches, and I think this
is going to be quickly forgotten,” stated Senator John Barrasso of
Democratic Congressman Frank Pallone of New Jersey had high praise for
Mr. Obama’s economic proposals.
“I think the message of building an economy that lasts is exactly what
my constituents want to hear. We want to make sure we create jobs, jobs
that last, bringing back manufacturing - that is very important to my
constituents," said Pallone. "We have lost a lot of jobs over the last
20 years overseas.”
But Republican Congressman Joe Wilson of South Carolina said the
president’s economic agenda will bring nothing but hardship.
“The vision of higher taxes destroys jobs. And the proposals he had
destroy jobs at a time when we have record unemployment," said Wilson.
"His prior policies of spending have not been successful.”
Related - Republicans Accuse Obama of Divisive Tactics
If domestic politics continue to spawn hyper-partisanship at the
Capitol, some of the president’s foreign policy pronouncements were well
received by Republicans and Democrats alike. Republican Congressman
James Lankford of Oklahoma applauded Obama’s tough stance on Iran’s
“That is the clearest statement he has made on Iran that I have heard,
ever, that we are not going to tolerate a nuclear Iran. There was wide
bipartisan agreement on that,” said Lankford.
would imagine that the mullahs [in Iran] and [President Mahmoud]
Ahmadinejad are trembling as they wake up in Iran this morning,” said
Missouri Democratic Congressman Emanuel Cleaver.
Many legislators of both parties also endorsed a get-tough policy when
it comes to China’s trade practices.
“There is not a business I have talked to that does business in or with
China that does not have a serious complaint about intellectual theft,
whether it is in the retail sector, or the software manufacturing
sector, or the manufacturing sector,” said Virginia Democratic
Congressman Gerry Connolly.
President Obama’s call for bipartisanship and a sense of common purpose
in confronting America’s challenges got a varied response from
One Democratic representative said that members of Congress absolutely
must work together, even during an election year like this one, or the
nation will suffer. A Republican representative noted Mr. Obama made a
similar plea in last year’s State of the Union address, adding that,
with rare exception, it went unheeded.