McConnell: We Have a Historic Opportunity Before Us
‘Last night President Trump talked about a new spirit of optimism in our country. He talked about repositioning us for success both at home and in a dangerous world. He talked about growing opportunity, better jobs, and a thriving middle class, then actually put forward policies that can get us there.'
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) made the following remarks on Senate floor today regarding President Trump’s address to a Joint Session of Congress:
“I think we were all pleased to hear the president's unifying message last night. It was refreshing for everyone after such a difficult election season. It was great to see even my friend the Democratic Leader occasionally applauding the president last night. It's a reminder that we're all in this together.
“Yesterday, I laid out my hopes for his address to Congress. I said that the middle class was ready for a new direction after eight years of disappointments. I said we all knew what needed to get done too. Things like simplifying taxes, to create more jobs, reforming regulations, to get the economy moving and repealing and replacing Obamacare, to bring relief to the middle class. It was great to hear the president touch on each of these issues last night.
“It was great to hear him talk about his outstanding nominee to the Supreme Court too, Judge Neil Gorsuch — a judge who has earned widespread acclaim and who will be a worthy successor to Justice Scalia on the High Court.
“Last night President Trump talked about a new spirit of optimism in our country. He talked about repositioning us for success both at home and in a dangerous world. He talked about growing opportunity, better jobs, and a thriving middle class, then actually put forward policies that can get us there. What a change from the last eight years.
“He also outlined some of the actions he’s already taken to move these priorities forward. For instance, he took action yesterday to send the so-called WOTUS rule back to the drawing board. He demonstrated that there are realistic ways to protect our nation’s waterways without excessive and duplicative regulation that infringes on the property rights of individuals. Let me again commend him for protecting the middle class from yet another regulation based more on ideology than fact.
“It’s just the type of thing Americans are so tired of — left-wing regulations spun as one thing yet really do another, left-leaning laws that purport to help the middle class but hurt middle class families. A great example of that is Obamacare. Americans were promised costs would go down, but they went up. Americans were promised more choice, but they got less. Americans were promised they could keep their plans, but that was a broken promise too.
“No wonder Americans were so tired of what they’ve seen the last eight years. They’re ready for something new. They’re ready to start believing in the future again. And the president made clear last night that he’s ready to work with Congress on policies that can actually move us forward. He’ll find many partners in Congress excited to get those things done.
“We share his commitment on other issues he outlined too. We agree that our children deserve better than failing schools. We agree that our veterans deserve better than failing bureaucracies. We agree that our brothers, and mothers, and friends, and neighbors deserve better than the scourge of heroin and prescription opioid abuse.
“In an era of divided government, Congress took what action we could on these issues — it was often significant action, we’re all proud of it — but we now have the chance to achieve even more. So of course we’re excited about the opportunity to improve the lives of the men and women who sent us here. That’s why we all signed up for this job in the first place.
“And I’m not just talking about Republicans. I know our Democratic friends have different ideas than us on many things. I know the Far Left is pressuring them to burn the place down because it can’t accept the results of the last election. But everyone knows that won’t get us anywhere.
“Let’s remember, we have a historic opportunity before us. We can keep re-fighting the last election over and over, or we can heed the president’s message of unity last night. We can come together to get big things done. We can pull down the barriers of the past. We can uphold, in the words of the Democratic Leader himself, our ‘moral obligation’ to ‘avoid gridlock and get the country to work again.’ I know he said that just before the election. I know he hoped the election would turn out differently. But we each have a duty to accept the results.
“We each have a duty to bring the country together and move it forward. That is now the challenge before our Democratic friends. I ask them to meet the moment. I hope they will. Because the American people are counting on us all. They’re ready for a new start. We’re determined to work hard on their behalf. And, as the president said himself last night, so is he.”
Related Issues: Obamacare, Health Care, Supreme Court, Judicial Nominations