Pocan Statement on President Obama’s State of the Union Address
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan’s (WI-02) today released the following statement on President Obama’s State of the Union Address. Pocan’s guest for the speech was Arianna Goodwin, a constituent from Madison, WI, who has worked numerous minimum wage jobs to support her two young children and is a participant in the Operation Fresh Start program.
“I applaud President Obama’s bold agenda to address the growing problem of income inequality in America,” said Rep. Mark Pocan. “As our economy continues to improve and recover from the great recession, too many working Americans are still struggling just to make ends meet. The President’s agenda will help raise wages and build an economy that works for every American, not just the wealthy and privileged few.
“The President laid out important initiatives to help hardworking Wisconsinites, like Arianna Goodwin, improve their lives through education tax credits and more affordable access to community colleges,” Rep. Pocan continued. “I am especially pleased President Obama pushed for critical infrastructure investments. These investments will provide good jobs for hard-working Americans and ensure our country has a 21st century transportation system to compete in the global marketplace.
“I also support President Obama’s plan to close the income inequality gap by raising fees on the largest financial institutions and restoring tax fairness by reinstating the Reagan era capital gains tax rate for the highest earners to 28 percent to pay for initiatives which will benefit the middle-class and tax breaks for hard working Americans,” said Rep. Pocan. “Investing in education opportunities will also ease the economic squeeze on working families.
“While I support much of what the President had to say tonight, I am disappointed he pushed for an expansion of our nation’s flawed trade policies,” Rep. Pocan said. “I support fair trade, but I cannot support more bad trade deals that will hurt our American jobs and American industries. I hope President Obama and U.S. Trade Representative Froman are open to the concerns my colleagues and I have expressed about the consequences of fast-track legislation and the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations.
“Now that President Obama has laid out his agenda to help grow the middle-class and sustain our economic recovery, the onus is now on Congress to act,” concluded Rep. Pocan. “The American people cannot wait any longer for a gridlocked Congress to take action. It is time to move our country forward, but we can only make progress if we work together to increase opportunities for every single American.”