February 04, 2020

Van Hollen Statement on President Trump’s State of the Union Address

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement regarding President Trump’s State of the Union address.

“This evening, President Trump had the opportunity to put forward an agenda to unite our country behind a common sense of purpose. Instead, he drove deeper divisions and continued to advance policies that, when stripped of nice-sounding rhetoric, serve the interests of super-wealthy elites at the expense of hard-working Americans. Tonight he proposed to give tax breaks for private school instead of investing more in public schools for all Americans. At the very moment he is talking about the need for affordable health care, his Administration’s lawyers are busy in court seeking to dismantle vital protections for people with pre-existing health conditions.”

“He spoke in the chamber of the House of Representatives, but failed to recognize the hundreds of important bills they have passed to address the very real challenges faced by the American people, including measures to increase the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, to reduce the costs of prescription drugs, and to ensure equal pay for equal work. The House has also passed legislation to reduce the terrible toll of gun violence by establishing universal background checks to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. My guest tonight was Andrea Chamblee, the widow of Capital Gazette reporter John McNamara, whose life was taken in a shooting that also killed four of his coworkers on June 28, 2018. I am grateful for  Andrea’s attendance this evening, and I stand with her in demanding action to end the epidemic of gun violence.”

“All of these important measures – and many more – have passed the House of Representatives, but they are now sitting in the United States Senate. They are being held up by Senator McConnell and Republican senators. President Trump could have called upon the Senate to act on these bills, but he didn’t say a thing. I was deeply disappointed by this missed opportunity, but I will continue working to represent and uphold the best interests of Marylanders and the American people.”