Gillibrand, Collins react to State of the Union

Staff Reports Posted 21 January 2015 at 12:00 am

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY, and Congressman Chris Collins, R-Clarence, both issued statements following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday night.

U.S. Rep. Chris Collins:

“Once again, President Obama used his annual national address to double down on divisive political rhetoric and unrealistic ideas. Rather than focus on policies that brighten the future of the middle class in a sustainable manner, the President has instead, sabotaged success and pitted Americans against one another. The President continues to advocate class warfare, and divide our country. He has repeatedly demonstrated that his idea of a bipartisan solution is his way or the high way.

“What the President failed to address was that this past election, the country spoke loud and clear about the direction we need to take. The result was the strongest Republican House majority since the 1920s, a Republican Senate majority, and Republican control of 68 out of 98 state legislative chambers. Americans recognize that Republicans are focused on creating an environment friendly to job creation through comprehensive tax reform, energy independence, entitlement reform and a patient centered health care system. The President needs to accept this new reality, and find a way to unify the country as we move forward.”

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand:

“Tonight President Obama presented a plan to ensure a fair shot at the American dream for anyone willing to earn it. As I travel throughout the state, New Yorkers tell me they are still struggling even as the economy begins to show signs of recovery. They want action from Congress to ease the burden of the basic costs of living so they can provide for their families, afford to send their kids to college, work good paying jobs, and retire with dignity. Now, Congress must do its part to work together, Democrats and Republicans, to expand economic opportunity for hard working families.

“I had hoped the President would use this opportunity to demand that we also make college campuses safe. Last week I personally urged the President to shine a national spotlight on the need to flip the incentives that currently reward colleges for sweeping sexual assaults under the rug. I was honored to have Emma Sulkowicz as my guest tonight who represents the grassroots movement of young women holding Congress and the system accountable. I will continue to fight to pass the Campus Accountability and Safety Act, a bipartisan bill that will finally force colleges and universities across the country to face this problem head-on with the goal of making safe campuses for America’s students a reality.

“The President’s goals for an expanded middle class, a fairer tax system and a better shot for hardworking families should rise above political party, and I am hopeful Congress will use his ideas as a starting point for real action.”