Congressman Rivera released the following statement reacting to President Barack Obama's joint address to Congress on Thursday:
"American workers and job creators are struggling in today's economy. Washington's record of senseless fiscal policies--the out-of-control spending and uncertainty about new taxes and regulations--has left employers hesitant to invest in new projects or workers. House Republicans have worked during the last nine months to remove those barriers to job creation. Tonight, President Obama took the first step toward presenting his own plan to create jobs in America.
"I am glad that the President is finally joining the conversation to help the more than 14 million unemployed Americans find work, and that he has expressed an interest in reaching across the aisle to find solutions.
"President Obama once again mentioned the United States' pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea as a potential area for economic growth and job creation in our country. His own administration estimates that the three agreements could create upwards of a quarter of a million American jobs.
"The three pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea would open up new markets for American companies, and put people back to work, especially in South Florida where we are experiencing above average unemployment levels.
"If the President is going to continue pointing to the free trade agreements as potential engines for economic growth, he should let his actions speak and send all three agreements to Congress where they will no doubt garner bipartisan approval."