Area Lawmakers React to President Trump's State of the Union Address

Despite his call for unity, Democrats and Republicans have differing opinions on the speech

Brad Choat
February 06, 2019 - 8:47 am
January 3, 2019; Washington, DC, USA; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), receives a hug and kiss from Rep. William Lacy Clay (D, MO) before his ceremonial swearing in to Congress on January 3, 2019 in Washington D.C.

January 3, 2019; Washington, DC, USA; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), receives a hug and kiss from Rep. William Lacy Clay (D, MO) before his ceremonial swearing in to Congress on January 3, 2019 in Washington D.C. Mandatory Credit: Hannah Gaber-USA TODAY

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UNDATED (KMOX) — In Tuesday night's "State of the Union" address, President Donald Trump said the nation is at a moment of "unlimited potential."

What did Missouri and Illinois lawmakers think of that?

Missouri Republican Josh Hawley says Donald Trump outlined an ambitious path forward and he commends him.

Hawley says he was pleased to hear plans to lower the cost of health care and to emphasize border security. 

In Illinois, Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth says in a statement: "It's unfortunate the commander-in-chief did not use the state of the union as an opportunity to change course or deliver a positive and inclusive message that moves us forward as a nation." 

Senator Dick Durbin also wasn't at a loss for words on Twitter last night, blasting President Trump over health insurance, another looming partial government shutdown, climate change, and national security.

Locally, Democratic Representative Lacy Clay told KMOX's Brad Choat after the speech that the state of the union is broken.

"It's broken because of the damage and pain that Donald Trump has inflicted. Our friends no longer trust us and our enemies no longer fear us."

However, Clay was complimentary of President Trump's call for unity, along with his call for fighting HIV, AIDS, and childhood cancer. He also says he supports the President's call to remove troops from places like Afghanistan and Syria. 

Missouri Republican Rep. Ann Wagner told CBS News that she felt President Trump's speech "wonderful" and "unifying", but she's worried about whether Democrats will ignore his call for unity.

"The concern is that this turns into subpoenas, investigations, witch hunts, and partisain politics. People are tired of that."

Illinois Republican Rep. Rodney Davis issued a statement saying he agrees with the president that the state of the union is strong.

Davis says there are a number of issues Mister Trump outlined that Republicans and Democrats can and should work together on: Increasing job opportunities - lowering the cost of health care - and spending on infrastructure are three of them he cites.  

Southern Illinois Republican Rep. Mike Bost says the president outlined common-sense solutions to protest America's workers - grow the economy - and keep families safe. 

Related: President Trump Calls for Bipartisanship, But Draws Hard Line on Immigration