Washington, D.C. -— U.S. Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington) issued the following statement in response to the President’s State of the Union address tonight:
“I was pleased tonight to hear the President talk about the bipartisan economic stimulus package. The bill is a good first step towards jump starting a sluggish economy and providing real assistance to lower- and middle-income families and seniors. The stimulus package was a bipartisan effort, and I hope that Congress and the President can continue to work together in a bipartisan manner.
“However, I have learned from the President’s previous addresses that the devil is always in the details. Every year the President has proposed grand ideas in his State of the Union address, and then followed up with a budget request that has failed to include funding for his own priorities. In fact, he has even threatened to veto bills that included proposals from his State of the Union addresses.
“I am extremely disappointed that the President did not pledge to sign the Farm Bill that is under consideration in Congress. Every year the President talks about ending America’s addiction to oil, yet he has threatened to veto the Farm Bill, which includes $2.4 billion in new money for biofuel production and research.
“Finally, I hope that the President has learned that in order to make progress on addressing the challenges the American people face, he must work in a bipartisan manner with Congress and be willing to compromise. I stand ready to work with the President, but he must make a good-faith effort to find common ground.”