U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-South Carolina, released this statement Wednesday night following President Obama's State of the Union address.
WASHINGTON, D.C. 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, Sanford said. I was also glad to see that the President invited a Charleston resident to tonights 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. So while I was encouraged to hear that President Obama is focused on improving conditions for people like Sabrina, Im troubled by the short-sighted approach this administration is taking to the problems facing our country. Ultimately, I dont think the President is focusing on the right things, and a few thoughts struck me on that front.
One, President Obama is only paying lip service to the financial challenges that wait around the corner for our country, said Sanford. Its 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. The debt is already in excess of $17 trillion and we are only a few years from its growth accelerating even further due to demographic changes. We cant bury our heads in the sand to avoid this fundamental fact.
Second, the Presidents willingness to expand the powers of the Executive Branch by unilaterally undertaking policy changes is worrisome to me. He is continuing a trend of circumventing the legislative branch, such as with the selective implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Sanford continued. Such actions threaten the separation of powers laid out in the Constitution, which have served us well for over 200 years.