The Buzz

January 28, 2014

POLITICS (Updated): SC delegation's reaction to the State of the Union

Reaction from members of the S.C. congressional delegation to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday night.

The Buzz

A blog from The State's political team of Cassie Cope, Jamie Self and Andy Shain. Email tips to

Reaction from members of the S.C. congressional delegation to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday night:

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-Seneca: From a report in Roll Call -- “The world is literally about to blow up. ... The world as I know was not remotely described by the president. Syria is a contagion ... Explain to me what happens if the Syrian conflict goes on another year and (Syrian President Bashar al-Assad) continues to win. Iraq is disintegrating. The whole region is moving toward chaos, and we’re doing nothing. ... I hope he will leave a residual force in Afghanistan [so] they can do the job, because if he doesn’t, it will fall apart at a faster pace than Iraq,” Graham said, referring to keeping a support force past 2014."
Sen. Tim Scott, R-North Charleston: “What we heard tonight from the President were simply more prescriptions for ‘big government to the rescue.’ We’ve seen over the course of the last 50 years that simply doesn’t work. We need to fundamentally change our strategies moving forward to help the most vulnerable among us. Folks who are struggling don’t want a handout – they want a hand up. ... I will work with anyone else committed to building a better future to develop bold ideas that break away from our past failures."
Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-Laurens: “It’s disappointing that President Obama would give a campaign speech that divides the country rather than focus on issues that can bring both parties together in America’s best interest. I found the president’s insistence on bypassing Congress and implementing his agenda through executive orders to be particularly disturbing. Our Founding Fathers could have given us a King, but instead created the presidency, the Congress, and the courts."
Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-Indian Land: Tweeted during the address. Here are a few of his posts:

"Taking steps without legislation? Why would any Member of Congress applaud that line? The President just told them that they don’t matter"

"But 98% of people with full-time jobs are above the poverty line. Full-time jobs pull people out of poverty. NOT the minimum wage."

"MY IRA? This is new. No risk but great return. Wow! Did they teach economics at Harvard? & does the Fed know about this? QE is punishing savers."

"I think more & more people are correctly asking whether we still want to play the role of the being the policeman to the world."

Rep. Tom Rice, R-Myrtle Beach: “Americans know better than any Washington politician that the current state of our union is all but inspiring. ... President Obama has repeatedly said he wants to get people back to work; but his energy policies have blocked the addition of hundreds of thousands of American jobs. The President must double down on job creation and put forth policies—not rhetoric—that will get people back to work.”
Rep. Mark Sanford, R-Charleston: “Though President Obama and I often disagree on how to reach outcomes, I think his address this evening underscored some themes that we do agree on, such as the need to expand economic opportunity and provide tools to better help workers prepare for retirement. I was also glad to see that the president invited a Charleston resident to tonight’s address. As a single mother who worked full-time while getting her education, Sabrina Simone Jenkins exemplifies the hard-working spirit of South Carolinians, and she deserves real credit for the way she has overcome obstacles. ... (P)resident Obama is only paying lip service to the financial challenges that wait around the corner for our country. It’s true that in recent years the deficit has shrunk, but President Obama is taking an exceedingly short view of the challenges that are coming with our entitlement programs."
Rep. Joe Wilson, R-Springdale: "Tonight’s speech was anything but optimistic. Since he took office in 2009, President Obama has refused to work with Congress. ... His threat to disregard the legislative body by implementing his anti-job growth policies by “pen” and “phone” conveys a new level of irresponsibility. It undermines the will of the American people. ... By passing last month’s bipartisan budget, agreeing to several Obamacare reforms, and protecting our brave men and women in uniform, Congress has shown that we can work together. It is my hope that the President and his Administration will change course and become part of the team. The American people deserve better than his type of uncooperative behavior."

(No statements issued Tuesday night by Reps. Jim Clyburn, D-Columbia, and Trey Gowdy, R-Spartanburg.)

Meanwhile, S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley took to Facebook during the address:

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