Rep. Bill Pascrell:
“Bipartisanship isn’t a word on a teleprompter; it’s a continuous approach that aspires to unity. After two years of uninterrupted chaos and corruption, I know better than to take at face value anything this man tells us. I do know that the new Democratic Congress will continue to offer a positive agenda that seeks to lift this nation up through trade policies that support working Americans, rooting out rampant corruption, tax policies that will close the inequality gap, and dedication to a clean environment. Will Trump and Republicans join us? Will they finally stop intentionally dividing America? I’m not holding my breath. But in the meantime, Democrats keep pushing forward on a positive agenda.”
Rep. Mikie Sherrill:
“I hope that tonight, we hear the President set an agenda focused on making the lives of the American people better. We have pressing national needs requiring action – like transportation infrastructure investment, lower healthcare costs, and the opioid epidemic. These issues unite us as Americans, and we must focus on what we can agree on to break the gridlock in Washington and deliver for our communities.”
Rep. Albio Sires:
“Tonight, President Trump will address Congress and the nation, and I expect he might touch on important topics such as health care, immigration, and the economy, all while calling for bipartisanship and unity in government. However, unity is only truly possible when there is a reliable partner in the White House, whose word means something and is actually indicative of intent. Time and again, the President has proven he is an unfit and unwilling partner in governance by regularly breaking promises and failing to act in the best interest of the nation.
The President’s policies have failed the American middle class and instead caters to the wealthiest and most-connected in our country. He forced a 35-day partial government shutdown out of obstinance, jeopardizing the financial well-being and stability of American families, and costing the American economy nearly $11 billion. He pushed a $2 trillion tax plan that benefitted big corporations, banks, and top-tier earners at the expense of deductions essential for seniors, students, and middle-class families.
Furthermore, the Administration has aggressively continued the attack on American’s health care by promoting junk insurance plans, rolling back protections for women’s reproductive health, and targeting individuals with pre-existing conditions. Rather than work in a good-faith effort to pursue compromises that promote the livelihood and well-being of American communities, the President continues to use falsehoods and fear to promote ineffective policy. In this new year, it is my hope that the Administration will work with Congress in the best interest of the American people.”
State Republican Chairman Doug Steinhardt:
“President Trump is taking our country in the right direction. His policies are earning new, well-paying jobs, helping small businesses thrive and lifting America’s economy to new heights.
“While America grows, our home state of New Jersey lags behind. It’s time for New Jersey to fight back and tell Democrats in Trenton that we have had enough of the burdensome tax increases and strangling regulations. It’s time for both parties to come together and take action on improving New Jersey’s business climate and making our state more affordable.”
Gov. Phil Murphy:
“President Trump used his State of the Union Address to once again call for national unity and bipartisanship. Yet, unity requires empathy for our most vulnerable. Without it, it will remain up to the states to show the way on voting rights, on protecting our DREAMERs, on protecting health care, and on raising wages to lift people out of poverty — all issues which were lacking tonight. Time will quickly tell if this call for unity, like the many others he has made before, is quickly forgotten.
“If the president is sincere — this time — in finding a bipartisan solution to a real national crisis, then I welcome him to work with us in New Jersey, and with our partners in New York, to fund and build the Gateway Project. With crumbling rail tunnels more than a century old, and a major bridge that regularly breaks down and stops the flow of people and commerce across our region, no other infrastructure project can benefit our nation as much as Gateway.“Getting Gateway built is of the utmost concern for both commuter safety and economic progress – something a president familiar with the economic importance of our region should readily understand.
“With Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman on the House Appropriations Committee, Representatives Albio Sires, Donald Payne Jr., and Tom Malinowski on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker, New Jersey is ready to get to work. We only need President Trump to tell us the federal government is, as well.”
U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez:
“Tonight, the most divisive President in history spoke of unity, of bipartisanship, of American greatness, but ultimately, I am more likely to trust President Trump’s Twitter feed than Trump’s teleprompter.
“One speech isn’t enough to restore the nation’s trust in a President who lies whenever it suits him, who regularly betrays his own promises, and who literally shut down the people’s government over a useless border wall he promised Mexico would pay for.
“The President can speak platitudes about America’s respect around the world, but time and time again, he has betrayed the values that have made our nation great, shown little appreciation for America’s role in the world, and failed to offer real strategies to safeguard our interests and secure our prosperity in the face of immense global challenges.
“And frankly, no one speech by President Trump is capable of delivering bipartisan breakthroughs for the American people – only hard work, steady leadership, and good faith compromise can do that.
“After two years of erratic leadership, hateful rhetoric and broken promises, I fear that when the curtains close tonight, the chaos inside the Trump White House will resume and things will return to business as usual – weaponizing alternative facts, demonizing immigrants, and pursuing policies that enrich the wealthy few over the struggling and the striving.”
Rep. Donald Norcross:
“Many working men and women voted for candidate Trump because they believed his promise to rebuild our infrastructure, create jobs and raise wages. But President Trump is failing to deliver on his promises to the middle class, and he’s only doing things to make the rich richer, divide Americans and make our country less secure. This is worse than all talk and no action. Trump is all talk and bad actions.
“I still plan to work with colleagues across the aisle to actually invest in infrastructure improvements – even though the President continues to underfund his promises with shortchanged budget proposals. I still plan to work with colleagues across the aisle to raise the minimum wage – since the floor hasn’t been voted on in over 11 years. And I still plan to work together to curb the opioid epidemic – and ensure we are addressing the stigma of addiction. While the President pays lip service to the idea of bipartisanship, I’ll continue to do actual, meaningful work in Congress.”
Rep. Tom Malinowski:
“At the State of the Union, President Trump called for unity. He honored our veterans by acknowledging our World War II heroes, and he highlighted our country’s achievements by celebrating those who had gone where no man had gone before. I applauded the president’s call that we work as patriots, not partisans, on issues like infrastructure and health care. But then I heard far more specifics about building walls than about building bridges.”
“The President asked us to choose greatness. To me, greatness does not mean mortgaging the future of our middle class by giving tax cuts to our wealthiest citizens. It does not include betraying our values by banning immigrants based on their religion, or trying to discredit our law enforcement institutions and the patriots of our intelligence community. It is not advanced by shutting down our government for 35 days to force your will on the Congress and the American people. It is not achieved by denying the right to health care to our most vulnerable citizens.”
“My guest for the evening was Hing Foo Lee, whose brother John Lee passed away two weeks ago after a brave battle with cancer. After his diagnosis, John spent the remainder of his life fighting to secure the rights of those with preexisting conditions.”
“I believe in our country’s greatness. We need to rebuild America by investing in infrastructure, including the Gateway Project, which is essential to America’s economic prosperity. We need to lower the cost of healthcare and prescription drugs instead of making it easier for insurance companies to charge more for less inclusive coverage. We need to protect immigrants who come here seeking a better life, rather than turning our backs on refugees and closing our borders and our hearts to others. We need to protect our alliances with those friends who have stood by us for decades, not threaten to abandon them in search of a ‘better deal’.”
“I will continue to fight in this Congress to make sure not only New Jersey, but our country, lives up to the ideals we have long stood for.”
Rep. Josh Gottheimer:
“I’m glad the President stressed bipartisanship and the importance of putting country above partisan politics. But, as ever, the proof will be in the pudding. We must work together to invest in infrastructure, reinstate SALT, stand by our veterans and first responders, and make health care more affordable. We can only solve problems if we actually work together, not just talk about it.”
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