Congressman John B. Larson released the following statement today on President Barack Obama's State of the Union Address:
"The strength of our nation rests on opportunity. I applaud President Obama for his call tonight: that opportunity should never be out of reach because of where you're from or how much money you have.
"The President is right to seek a higher minimum wage. From a forum in Winsted last summer to various events and meetings in the district, activists and residents alike have made it clear the current minimum wage is not adequate. I am pleased to see the President take a step in the right direction today and hope his words echo through Congress, where Members have heard the struggles of individuals and families around the country.
"Empowering the middle class is crucial for our economy. I was pleased to hear the President announce a new workforce training initiative and know that in the First Congressional District, local stakeholders are working to improve vital industries and strengthen our workforce. Just this month, East Hartford's Goodwin College in partnership with the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology awarded its first credentials to students participating in a new program designed to improve our manufacturing workforce pipeline. I was proud to bring the Mayor of East Hartford Marcia Leclerc as my guest tonight. A supporter of local workforce training, Mayor Leclerc is a leader in bringing greater opportunity to the community of East Hartford.
"President Obama also spoke to the importance of supporting natural gas infrastructure. I commend his work to both lower our dependency on foreign energy and efforts to bring the financial and environmental benefits of natural gas to the nation.
"Tonight the President reaffirmed that together we can strengthen job creation, improve our education system, support our seniors and veterans and move our economy forward. I will be working with both sides of the aisle in the coming months on these issues and look forward to continuing my efforts for the people of Connecticut."