UPDATE: Local Lawmakers Weigh In On State Of The Union Address

DETROIT (WWJ) – President Barack Obama addressed the nation Tuesday night with the 2012 State of the Union speech – and Michigan’s elected leaders had plenty to say afterward.

Republican state Rep. Mike Rogers told WWJ Newsradio the president’s speech was “divisive.” 

“I was hoping he’d call a time-out on government, on new regulations so we could get some certainty in businesses. I was hoping he wouldn’t use a very divisive tactic to try to divide Americans for political gain, I think that’s a horrible way to try to bring the country together on important issues,” said Rogers, R- 8th District.

Republican state Rep. Thaddeus McCotter said the president has three years of failed economic policies.

“Here in Michigan, we know that credit is something that has to get flowing – and unfortunately the refusal of a president who supported the Wall Street bailout to actually, fundamentally seek restructuring of those banks and those entities is going to continue to cripple our economy,” said McCotter, R- 11th District.

Across the aisle, Democrats appeared to hear an entirely different speech, lavishly praising the president’s performance and his initiatives.

“The president delivered a passionate vision and a practical agenda to meet the needs of American families. His focus on American manufacturing is already paying off in Michigan, where manufacturing is on the rebound and can help lead the way to a new era of prosperity for the middle class. The president’s emphasis on economic fairness was very welcome. We need to make sure that all of us who benefit from our country’s manifold opportunities contribute equitably to preserving and expanding those opportunities.” U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich, told the Associated Press.

U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., said she was happy to hear the president discuss trade policies.

“The most important issue facing Michigan right now is transforming our economy to create new jobs and improving economic security for middle-class families, and I was very glad to hear President Obama focus on these priorities. I was especially pleased that the president embraced the idea of a trade enforcement unit to help crackdown on countries who continue to violate trade laws to gain an anti-competitive advantage over our businesses and workers.”  Stabenow said.

And venerable Congressman John Dingell, D-Mich., criticized those in leadership who fail to find common ground.

“I sincerely hope that Congress and America’s private sector will embrace the president’s blueprint. He’s right: Today is a make or break moment for America and we need to take swift, decisive and intelligent action. We must put partisan bickering aside and work together for a better future,” Dingell said.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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