Washington, D.C. – Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-Chairs, Congressman Mark Pocan (WI-02) and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), released the following statement on President Trump’s State of the Union:

“Donald Trump has no understanding of the struggles facing working families. He thinks the economy is working because it works for his billionaire friends -- but the reality for everyday families is far different.

“Rising health care costs, skyrocketing prescription drug prices, and stagnant wages have left tens of millions of Americans struggling to afford the basics. Nearly thirty percent of American adults report skipping prescriptions because of cost, but the Trump Administration has done nothing to stop Big Pharma raising their prices month after month. Twenty-seven million Americans are uninsured – including more than four million children – but instead of expanding access to care, the Trump Administration is suing to end protections for pre-existing conditions and trying to end Medicaid as we know it. Forty percent of Americans can’t afford a $400 emergency, but that doesn’t concern the White House because the wealthiest are enjoying record gains in the stock market.

“The American people don’t need more hollow promises from this president. We need bold action to tackle drug pricing – not proposals that let Big Pharma off the hook and exclude negotiation. We need to take on the greed in our current healthcare system and expand coverage to everyone – not erode the protections and safety net that currently exists. And we need action to address the root of our economic inequality: a rigged system that allows President Trump to line the pockets of his rich friends while everyday families work harder and harder for less and less.

“Let’s be clear – Americans deserve better than what they heard from the president tonight. They don’t want school vouchers – they want to raise teachers’ salaries, rebuild our crumbling schools, and ensure every child can receive a quality public education. They don’t want to gut the Affordable Care Act or block grant Medicaid – they want to see universal health care for everyone in our country. They don’t want an administration that demonizes immigrants and wastes billions on a harmful wall – they want a humane, just, and fair immigration system that welcomes families trying to build a life in America. They don’t want reckless military escalations that endanger our troops or illegal and costly endless wars — they want to draw down our military engagements, engage in diplomacy, and reinvest in communities who need help here at home.

“We reject President Trump’s divisive vision. We can do so much better.”