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Congressman Jerry Lewis Praises State of the Union as an Impressive Action Plan

Location: Washington, DC


February 3rd, 2005 - -

WASHINGTON - Congressman Jerry Lewis praised President Bush for laying out a sweeping agenda for his second term, calling Wednesday's State of the Union speech "a clear plan of action."

Lewis, who is chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, said congressional leaders are prepared to support the President in his drive to put Social Security on a path to future solvency, to eliminate the federal deficit and to support freedom around the world.

Lewis issued the following statement on the State of the Union address:

"This was not just a speech about possibilities. It was the announcement of a clear plan of action that the President will be working hard to put into place for the next months and years.

"The President has made it clear that he will under no circumstances change or reduce the benefits for those who are now receiving Social Security or who will be eligible in the near future. What he is committed to doing is to change the outlook of those young workers who will be paying for the program their entire lives but who believe they will never see a single benefit check when they reach retirement age. I believe the plan the President has proposed will bring security and optimism to our nation's retirement system, and I believe he will convince the American people of that as he travels the nation in the next few months.

"We saw tonight that the President is adamant about bringing freedom and peace around the world and security from terrorism to Americans. He is sending our new Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice, on a campaign to convince our allies that the promise of freedom we saw with the Iraqi elections can be a springboard to democracy and peace throughout the Middle East. Neither the President nor the Secretary of State will rest until that goal is achieved.

"We in Congress have been given a challenge to reduce the burden on taxpayers and future generations of Americans will bear because of the growing federal deficit. I have told the President we are committed to meeting that challenge, while at the same time balancing the needs of our troops on the front lines against terrorism and maintaining vital programs here at home."

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