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February 04, 2020

Inhofe Responds to the 2020 State of the Union Address

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) released the following video response today to President Trump’s 2020 State of the Union address.

 

Click here to view and download Sen. Inhofe’s video remarks.

Video remarks may be used for broadcast and/or to embed in print stories.

 

As prepared for delivery:

If there is one thing made clear tonight it is this: The Great American Comeback is here under the direction of President Trump. Our economy is the greatest it’s ever been, and it’s only getting better. We’ve confirmed more conservative judges than ever before, and illegal border crossings are down by 75 percent. The president made a lot of good points tonight, but I was especially glad to hear him talk about rebuilding our military; vital trade deals like the USMCA; and key parts of this year’s NDAA: Space Force and paid family leave.

Over the past three years, President Trump has made it clear that he’s committed to rebuilding our military and taking care of our veterans. The numbers prove it. Since President Trump took office, we’ve appropriated $2.2 trillion to rebuild our military which means we are finally making up for Obama’s 25 percent cut. What we heard tonight that was so encouraging is that he isn’t done yet. The president outlined a bold vision that will keep a focus on our strategic competitors, China and Russia, and continue our peace through strength strategy—the same strategy that took out monsters like al-Baghdadi and Soleimani.

Kelli and Gage Hake from Stillwater, Oklahoma, are President Trump’s guests this evening. Kelli Hake was at home with her one-year-old son, Gage, when she learned that her husband, Army Staff Sergeant Christopher Hake, had been killed while serving his second tour of duty in Iraq. While on patrol, Staff Sergeant Hake’s fighting vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb supplied by Iranian terrorist leader Soleimani.

The FY20 NDAA, which I led as chairman of as Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, established the U.S. Space Force as the sixth branch of our Armed Forces—another big win the president talked about tonight. I'm proud to help President Trump turn his bold, strategic vision into reality and protect our dominance in space now and in the future. The FY20 NDAA also provides 12 weeks of paid parental leave to federal civilian employees. I am looking forward to continue working on policies in the upcoming NDAA that would benefit all Oklahomans.

The president agreed with me tonight on the border—walls work. I am going to continue supporting our work of building the wall and ending the abuse of the asylum process. And I have to applaud our friends in Mexico. Since June of this year, the Mexican government has committed to working with President Trump and his administration to secure our shared border and address the caravans of migrants moving through Mexico in an effort to gain illegal entry into the United States. It’s resulted in a 75 percent drop in crossings. I saw this firsthand when I visited the border to meet with Mexican officials in August of last year. Now that we’re making real progress securing the border, I was glad to hear the president is continuing to take on sanctuary cities and their dangerous policies. Across the country, sanctuary city policies create safe havens for those seeking to evade our immigration laws, protecting them at the cost of not protecting American citizens. People are shocked that there are governments throughout the nation that reward people for committing crimes and breaking laws. That’s what sanctuary cities do. I will continue to work with the administration to address sanctuary cities and their harmful effects.

The president also talked about the USMCA tonight. Oklahoma farmers, businesses and manufacturers rejoiced in January when the president signed the USMCA. This new trade agreement will provide certainty for American farmers and ranchers while preserving free and fair access to North American markets—and this is just the latest of new, fair free trade deals the president has negotiated, including the first phase of the China deal and agreements with Japan and South Korea. I will continue to fight alongside the president this year to ensure all Oklahomans benefit from the President’s trade policies.

Throughout his administration, President Trump has emphasized the importance of domestic energy dominance and tonight was no different. Officially, the Obama war on fossil fuels is over and we’re seeing the positive results—we are now the world leader in oil and gas production and we’re on track to be a net energy exporter. Yet, because some liberal states are abusing the federal permitting process, it remains difficult to upgrade our nation’s energy pipeline infrastructure. As a result, some Americans are facing higher energy prices this winter. I intend to work closely with the White House this year to rebuild and expand our nation’s crumbling energy infrastructure. In 2020, we have a historic opportunity to improve our transportation infrastructure by enacting a long term highway reauthorization bill and a water resources bill. A long term highway bill would provide needed funding and resources for Oklahoma highway and bridge projects to reduce congestion and support economic activity across the state. A water resources bill would allow efforts to move forward to upgrade the Tulsa-West Tulsa levees and modernize the MKARNS—ensuring both empower economic development in Oklahoma.

I was glad the president was talking about health care tonight. I look forward to hearing more about the Administration’s efforts to lower the cost of health care, while continuing to provide the highest quality of care in the world. Working together, I am confident we can advance legislation that will work towards lowering the cost of prescription drugs—specifically insulin—and addressing a number of issues families face on a daily basis: rural health care closures, surprise medical billing, transparency, accountability, and flexibility to choose the plan and the doctor that is right for them.

I am extremely optimistic about the future of our country after the common sense, forward-looking plan President Trump put forth in his remarks tonight. The State of the Union is strong and, despite Democrat attempts to smear the president, he continues to get work done for the American people. It’s inspiring to people back in Oklahoma—I hear it often: “promises made, promises kept.” President Trump presented an optimistic vision of America’s future tonight, and from his track record, I know he will continue to deliver results. I look forward to working with the administration this year to turn even more of his vision into reality. The Great American Comeback is here, we’ll be a part of it.


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