Blue Dog Leadership Responds to President Trump’s First State of the Union
Today, the co-chairs of the fiscally-responsible, Democratic Blue Dog Coalition—Reps. Jim Costa (D-CA), Henry Cuellar (D-TX), and Daniel Lipinski (D-IL)—released the following statement in reaction to President Trump’s first State of the Union:
“Last night, President Trump called for both parties to come together on several key issues. We hope those calls for bipartisanship are indeed genuine, and we hope the President takes the opportunity to unify the country.
“The reality is that the majority of Americans have been frustrated by the inability of lawmakers in Washington to reach agreements. They understand, and we agree, that our nation's capital hasn't been working the way that it should.
“At a time when too many American families feel as though they haven’t fully recovered from the 2008 financial crisis, our nation is on a fiscally-unsustainable path. Last year, for the first time in U.S. history, the national debt surpassed $20 trillion, and it continues to increase at an alarming rate. This issue was notably missing in the President’s speech, and we hope the calls for increased spending are met with real bipartisan dialogue on how we can rein in our debt and develop a long-term, fiscally-responsible budget. As a result of our growing debt, Americans will see lower wages, higher interest payments, and fewer jobs. We must take serious action to reduce the debt if we want to avoid another financial crisis and put our economy on the path to prosperity.
"Last year, the Blue Dogs put forward bipartisan, commonsense solutions to help grow our economy, bring down drug prices and improve the Affordable Care Act, rein in our spending, hold leaders in Washington accountable, and ensure our nation's strong defense. This year, we hope Republican leadership will stop catering to the extreme of its party and bring more of these solutions to the House floor for a vote, because the path to getting things done in Washington runs through the middle of the political spectrum.
“Too often, we’ve seen calls for bipartisanship fall short, with both parties in Congress running to their corners. For too long, we’ve seen leadership cater to the extreme rather than meet in the middle. As Blue Dogs, we have continuously advocated for Republicans and Democrats to work together to come up with real solutions for all Americans, and we will continue to do so. Because Americans are counting on the President and members of Congress to come together and finally put the country over party.”