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Utah representatives respond to State of the Union address

WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 04: President Donald Trump holds a glass of water during the State of the Union address as House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Vice President Mike Pence look on in the chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives on February 04, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Trump delivers his third State of the Union to the nation the night before the U.S. Senate is set to vote in his impeachment trial. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON–Utah representatives are responding to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address he gave Tuesday night in Washington, D.C.

During the address, Trump highlighted several accomplishments he’s made while in office, focusing on the economy, unemployment rates, border control and more.

Trump began the night stating that the country is doing well — in fact, stronger than it ever has been before.

“I am thrilled to report to you tonight that our economy is the best it has ever been,” President Trump said. ” Our military is completely rebuilt, with its power being unmatched anywhere in the world — and it is not even close.  Our borders are secure.  Our families are flourishing.  Our values are renewed.  Our pride is restored.  And for all these reasons, I say to the people of our great country, and to the Members of Congress before me:  The State of our Union is stronger than ever before!”

The economic strength the President speaks of can also be seen on a local level, according to the White House. Utah’s state economy has been improving, with the unemployment rate falling to 2.3% — a record low — and 146,000 jobs being created since Trump’s election.

“The 46 opportunity zones in Utah are attracting investment to previously forgotten communities, including in Davis, Salt Lake, and Weber counties,” the White House wrote in a press release. “Utah’s falling poverty rate has lifted 55,000 people out of poverty.”

Utah representatives responded to the State of the Union address shortly after it ended, with many praising Trump for his work in the last three years.

Rep. Chris Stewart

Rep. Chris Stewart posted a video on Facebook, commending the president on his accomplishments and how they pertain to Utah.

“When the president talks about ‘The Great American Comeback,’ it really is true,” Stewart said. “We’ve had remarkable success in the last three years.”

Stewart pointed to the economic growth in the country, specifically how it’s benefiting the state economy.

“The strongest economy in my lifetime,” Stewart said. “I love the fact that this economy is benefiting the hardest workers among us.”

 

Stewart noted that the unemployment rate is at a 50-year low, with the president working to lower the costs of healthcare, paid family leave and expanding access to affordable childcare.

He also pointed toward the military, stating it’s more powerful than ever before — giving the servicemen and women the support they deserve to defend against terrorism and outside threats.

“The world can be a dangerous place and the world looks to the United States for leadership,” Stewart said, “The president has rebuilt our military, he’s reinvigorated that leadership and it’s made a real difference.”

Sen. Mike Lee

Sen. Mike Lee added to the conversation shortly after the address was over, mainly focusing on the economy in Utah.

“President Trump is at his highest approval rate,” Lee said in a Facebook video. “Because we’re currently experiencing a significant blue-collar boom.”

Lee pointed to how wages are rising faster for those without a college degree, giving the lowest-income workers a 16% increase since the election.

“It’s the very Americans who were most left behind in the Obama economy that are now succeeding under the Trump economy,” he said.

He also highlighted how thousands of Utahns have been lifted out of poverty through Trump’s economy while reaching an all-time low unemployment rate.

“President Trump knocked it out of the park in the State of the Union address tonight,” Lee said. “I thought he did a fantastic job. I’m equally grateful for the job he’s doing in the White House.”

Sen. Romney

Sen. Mitt Romney has been known to turn heads for being a critic of President Trump despite being in the same party. Romney was one of two Senate Republicans who voted for witness accounts in the impeachment trial.

Romney listened to the State of the Union with Utah Governor Gary Herbert, thanking him — rather than the Trump administration — for Utah’s growth at the beginning of his statement.

“I appreciated welcoming Governor Herbert to the Capitol and spending time with him ahead of the State of the Union address,” Romney wrote in a statement. “Under his leadership, Utah continues to see economic prosperity, job growth, and our unemployment rate is at a record low.

In Romney’s response, he spent some time praising the highs of the State of the Union.

“Our nation has experienced similarly strong economic growth, with rising wages, more job creation, and low unemployment for the past few years,” he wrote. “The President rightfully recognized that success and also highlighted several policy areas in which both parties should work together.”

But, he also spent time urging the president to address the lows the country still faces.

“Going forward, I am urging Congress and the President to urgently address our nation’s runaway debt, which threatens our retirement programs like Social Security and Medicare.”

Romney finished his statement addressing his TRUST act, which he says would address the country’s debt crisis. This legislation is Romney’s top priority this year.

 

Rep. John Curtis

Rep. Job Curtis also focused on the economic growth in the country and locally in Utah, despite what he calls “partisan times.”

“I am thankful that even during partisan times, the American economy is strong,” Curtis said in a statement.

Curtis thanked the president for prioritizing bipartisan approaches to address problems in healthcare and infrastructure, despite the somewhat polarized environment.

“I look forward to working with both the Administration and my colleagues in Congress to deliver meaningful changes for Utah’s Third District.”

Rep. Ben McAdams

Like Sen. Romney, Rep. Ben McAdams briefly praised the successes seen so far in the Trump presidency — while also looking forward to more work.

McAdams said he listened to the speech with 24 Republicans and 24 Democrats in the Problem-Solving Caucus. He said they weren’t separated by the aisle in the House chamber that normally divides parties, as an effort to show bipartisan support for the country’s growth.

“I’ve learned from my time in public service that you don’t have to agree on every issue in order to find common ground and achieve progress,” McAdams said in a statement. “With a strong economy and more Americans employed, now is the time for us to work together to get our fiscal house in order, strengthen Social Security and Medicare and invest in modernizing infrastructure.”

McAdams said now is the time to continue building consensus and passing bipartisan legislation to move the country forward. He said it’s increasingly important to support representatives on good ideas, regardless of what side the aisle they are on.

“I’m eager to work with my colleagues and the President to pass bipartisan legislation to dramatically lower prescription drug prices,” he said.

McAdams joined Dave & Dujanovic’s show Wednesday morning to talk more about his experience listening to the speech.

McAdams also responded to Nancy Pelosi ripping President’s Trump speech after he was finished speaking. He said that it was disrespectful and disappointing to see.

“I think Speaker Pelosi was wrong to rip up the president’s speech,” he said. “The American people deserve better than that.”

Rep. Rob Bishop

Rep. Rob Bishop highlighted the successes of the country underneath the leadership of President Trump.

“We are in the midst of an incredible time in America’s history,” Bishop said in a statement. “By almost any metric, Americans today are faring better than they were before 2016.”

Bishop pointed to the economic strength in Utah as well as the improvements in national security. He said this is thanks to Trump’s leadership and bipartisan cooperation.

“We are safer and we are stronger, and I commend President Trump and his administration for creating an environment in which Americans can succeed,” he said.  “I remain optimistic that our best days are ahead of us.”