Sessions Responds to State of the Union Address
Applauds President's agenda to strengthen our economy, promote fiscal responsibility, enforce current immigration laws, and win the War on Terror
U.S. Congressman Pete Sessions (R-Dallas) issued the following statement in response to the President's State of the Union Address:
"Tonight, President Bush presented a positive, decisive agenda containing long-term solutions for growing our economy and protecting our nation.
"I am pleased that President Bush recognizes that the best short-term and long-term solution for economic growth is tax relief. By permanently extending the 2001 and 2003 tax relief and allowing tax-free healthcare savings, American families and businesses can keep money of their own money to invest in our economy through savings, spending, and hiring new workers.
"As in previous years, the President highlighted the ongoing need for fiscal responsibility and spending restraint, recognizing that the greatest threat to a balanced budget is the unsustainable growth of entitlements spending.
"Additionally, while some earmarks serve valuable purposes, such as funding for critical transportation and water infrastructure projects, I have consistently called for transparency and accountability in the earmark spending process, and I support the President's plan for earmark reform by eliminating wasteful spending projects, reducing the number of earmarks, and requiring that every earmark be subject to debate and a vote in Congress.
"The President also outlined border security and foreign policy priorities designed to protect our nation at home and abroad.
"I am pleased to hear of the border security improvements made this past year. However, border security remains a critical issue for the security of America and much work remains, including the completion of security fencing along the border. I look forward to supporting effective interior enforcement programs such as criminal alien removal programs and E-verify, which provides employers with additional tools to ensure the legal status of their employees.
"The President's speech reiterated the importance of our long-term commitment to the winning the War on Terror. Whether in Iraq, Afghanistan, or another country, terrorist organizations must be defeated, and tonight the President once again called on Congress to renew the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which is critical to our nation's ability to track terrorists in foreign countries. I join President Bush and my Republican colleagues in calling upon congressional Democrats to permanently reauthorize this important program before its February 1st expiration.
"Lastly, but most significantly, our troops have made significant progress in Iraq, and I support the President's commitment to build on this progress, allowing Iraqi forces to continue to take over security operations, facilitating stability in region, and enabling our troops to complete their mission successfully.
"As his last State of the Union address, President Bush's speech outlined a forward-looking agenda for long-term stability and peace, and I look forward to working with him in the coming year to meet domestic and international goals to ensure that America's best days lie ahead."