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Washington D.C. – House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement in response to the President’s State of the Union Address:

“In tonight’s State of the Union address, the President failed the most basic test of leadership—can you inspire good people from different backgrounds and with different agendas to come together to solve big problems? I hoped that the President would seize on this opportunity to build on his historic election and to broaden his governing coalition. Instead, the President made it clear that he is not interested in seeking cooperation or building consensus. Tonight the President told Americans that only his ideas matter, only his way is acceptable and only people that voted for him should have a voice in solving our nation’s problems.  That is not how America’s great leaders met history’s toughest challenges. Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan dared to dream that they could bring all Americans together under one banner. If we are to restore economic prosperity and breathe new life in to the American dream, we must rise to the challenge of our time, and we must seek unity of purpose.  If we are to free American families from the crushing burden of debt and doubt that is the unavoidable legacy of living paycheck to paycheck, we must join together and make the tough decisions that will lead to a strong and prosperous middle class. I expected more from President Obama. While I am disappointed, I will continue to hope that this President chooses to pursue a legacy that raises up the American ideal instead of continuing to rely on the politics of division and acrimony that has characterized our political discourse for far too long.