Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-4) has released the following statement in response to President Obama's State of the Union address:
"President Obama's speech reflects a clear difference of perspective. He believes government is the solution to our problems; I believe government is too often the problem. The President stated early in his speech that he believes the American people are united by the belief in opportunity for all -- regardless of race or religion or party, young or old, rich or poor -- and the notion that if you work hard and take responsibility, you get ahead. But if he really believes this, why doesn't he get government out of the way to allow American individualism and ingenuity to flourish? While the President touched on many of the issues of concern to most Americans, he refuses to allow the American spirit to be unleashed, preferring instead to call for government-imposed solutions that have failed in the past and will undoubtedly fail in the future.
It was disappointing, as well, to hear the President use his platform to shore up his base rather than reaching out to all Americans and their needs. The President's claim that he embraces an "all-of-the-above' energy policy was empty, as he quickly shifted to stifling power plants with claims of climate change. The President has previously made clear his opposition to coal, a plentiful energy source that is depended on by much of Missouri for its energy needs. An "all-of-the-above' energy policy must welcome alternative energy sources like wind and solar, but it cannot restrict exploration of and use of efficient and plentiful sources of energy like coal and oil. An "all-of-the-above' energy policy must include moving government out of the way to allow construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. This will not only create thousands of jobs in our country, but will ensure a ready supply of energy from Canada -- a friendly neighbor.
America needs action that involves getting government out of the way of job growth and unleashing the American spirit; not one of taking power away from the people. I remain focused on removing the uncertainty that is stifling job growth, growing the economy, and empowering the American people. It is imperative to get excess government out of the way of our economy, not further entangle it in our private lives. Our Founding Fathers intended that governing be a partnership between the branches of government, and it is my hope that the President will work with Congress to promote these common-sense ideas to help all Americans.
Constituents from Missouri's Fourth District have shared stories about the negative impact of the Administration's actions, and House Republicans are working on solutions to get government out of the way:
A substitute teacher will have her hours cut due to the President's health care law, lowering her take home pay and making it difficult to provide for her family. I support the American Health Care Reform Act, which replaces Obamacare with market-driven solutions that increase access and lower the cost of health care;
Community banks are being buried under a flood of regulations due to the Dodd-Frank financial reforms. I introduced the Small Business Credit Availability Act, which would help roll back this harmful legislation by freeing up equity small banks use to provide their customers with loans and working capital.
Rural electric cooperatives have been negatively impacted by the President's war on coal, which will shut down Missouri power plants and drive up the electricity bills of citizens across Missouri and the country. I continue to fight against overregulation by the EPA, and ensure America has a true "all of the above' energy policy to secure energy independence and lower energy costs.
I want to assure the citizens of Missouri's Fourth Congressional District that I, along with my colleagues in the House, am committed to a year of positive action for the people. We will continue to work to get Washington out of the way, helping to lower healthcare costs, cutting government waste, eliminating job-stifling red tape, and helping Americans take home more of their paycheck each month.
It is time for the President to work with Congress to improve the lives of hard-working Americans and end the harmful rhetoric of class warfare."
Congresswoman Hartzler serves on the House Agriculture, Armed Services, and Budget Committees.