WASHINGTON – Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) Co-Chairs Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Keith Ellison (D-MN), released the following statement after President Obama delivered his seventh State of the Union address. 


President Obama laid out a robust agenda tonight to make our economy work for everyone. The president’s proposals to create opportunity for hard-working Americans are encouraging steps towards making 2015 the last year the term ‘low-wage worker’ is used in the wealthiest nation in the world. 


“Working Americans are better off today than they were during President Obama’s first State of the Union, and much of what he outlined tonight will continue that record of success. We applaud the president’s plan to raise the capital gains tax to support investments in working families; we hope that he will stand strong on comprehensive tax reform that raises revenue to reverse our upside-down tax policy. His call for family and sick leave will go a long way to making life easier for working families. The president’s proposal to cut methane emissions and his continued push for a strong carbon rule are important efforts to stop a changing climate. 


“Too many Americans are struggling to afford basic necessities and find good-paying jobs. Congress must act to end harmful budget cuts, expand Social Security benefits, increase access to affordable higher education, and put Americans back to work by rebuilding our roads, schools and bridges. But putting working families first also means we cannot enter into trade deals that allow corporations to ship jobs overseas. The Congressional Progressive Caucus will not support a trade deal that increases trade deficits and undermines the security of the middle class. 


“The president showed strong leadership in 2014 and tonight he laid out a concrete path towards a stronger and more inclusive economy in 2015.  We support his executive action in the face of Republican intransigence, and look forward to working with his administration to continue expanding our middle class.” 


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