Washington, D.C. – Alaskan Congressman Don Young issued the following statement immediately after President Obama’s State of the Union address to the nation this evening:
“Tonight, the President had the opportunity to clearly outline his legislative priorities and vision for America in the State of the Union address. What I hoped for, following another year of rhetoric and broken promises, was a vision for bipartisan action to kick-start this economy and improve some of the many hardships facing the American people. While the President made his best attempt to outline ‘new’ policies and ideas, I was not convinced. Plain and simple, President Obama believes he knows best for the American people but it’s clear that he does not have the right plan for our country. America needs a plan that focuses on private industry, entrepreneurship, and individual freedoms. That plan must focus on creating jobs and growing our economy, not growing our government.
“Regardless of the President’s many claims that his polices work to create jobs and improve upon our fiscal environment, I believe differently. If the President was truly serious about making progress and helping the middle class, he would begin working alongside Senate Democrats to move a number of House passed jobs bills that currently sit untouched. His unwillingness to consider, to negotiate, or even schedule an up or down vote shows me that this will continue to be a ‘year of inaction’.
“I was elected to represent the people of Alaska, to protect our values and principals, our state’s resources and lands, and our way of life. What I've heard from the people of Alaska is that the federal government needs to reduce its ever growing footprint in our state, to reverse government regulations stifling our economy, and allow for an environment that supports job growth.
“My vision for America sits in stark contrast to the President’s. I believe the American people deserve a simpler tax code that allows all households and companies alike to get out from under the IRS. Increasing taxes on targeted industries or individuals that provide for a budding economy only causes harm and smothers growth. I believe in an America that supports businesses and entrepreneurs, one that creates value to this country in the form of infrastructure, roads, energy and development.
“The President says he will work to reduce red tape, to expedite permits, to grow domestic energy production; I say, let’s see it. The fact of the matter is that this President has missed the mark when it comes to developing our natural resources and expanding our nation’s energy production. This President fails to tell you that the increase in domestic oil production occurred not because of his policies, but because of the foresight of private land owners and the management of Governors across the country. We know that the only increase to energy production in America has taken place on state and private lands, while at the same time production on federal lands continues to decline. These are the President’s failed policies and broken promises that continue to hurt hardworking Americans.
“I believe in an America that fulfills its promise to its people, one that doesn't push massive federal overreach through lies and deceit. The Affordable Care Act is simply one example of this, but the list is endless. This Administration has not only failed to lower healthcare costs, it has managed to raise premiums for Alaskans and prevent businesses from hiring new workers out of fear that they will no longer be able to manage new taxes mandated by Obamacare.
“In my 40 years in Congress, I have not seen a President with as much disregard for the Congress as this one. Our nation entrusted the responsibility of passing laws to the Legislative Branch to ensure balance in guiding this great nation. Unfortunately, this President and his Administration have declared they will circumvent Congress in order to implement its widespread agenda that continues to lead this country astray.
“My colleagues and I in the House of Representatives have a different plan for America, one with fewer executive decrees and more negotiated solutions. We continue to pass numerous legislation and proposals to fix the many problems we face in this country. We work on plans to repeal all or certain portions of Obamacare because it’s what the American people have asked us to do. Additionally, I have supported several bills designed to reduce federal regulations and stem the tide of future regulations so businesses can get back to hiring and producing rather than filing and complying.
“I will continue to sponsor, cosponsor, and vote in favor of bills that reduce these federal regulations, simplify the tax code, strip away and replace Obamacare with a commonsense healthcare plan, and make it easier to find a job rather than making it easier to live without one. Like most Alaskans and Americans, I will not give up this fight.”