“The gap between the President’s rhetoric and policies runs wide and deep,” U.S. Senator Jack Reed, a Democrat, said in a statement.
Reed was just one of the members of Rhode Island’s congressional delegation who responded critically to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address Tuesday night.
The state's senior senator accused Trump of using the address to “whitewash” his divisive record, paying lip service to issues including the opioid epidemic, workforce training programs and infrastructure repair. Meanwhile, said Reed, the President’s policies tell a different story.
U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, another Democrat, agreed the president’s speech didn’t line up with his policies, particularly on tax reform.
“He touted his massive tax giveaway for corporations and the wealthiest few, which offers mere scraps to middle class families and puts vital programs like Social Security and Medicare in the cross hairs,” Whitehouse said in a statement.
In his address, Trump called for a solution to the deportation crisis facing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) recipients, also known as "dreamers." But U.S. Congressman Jim Langevin found the President’s statements on immigration misleading.
“Immigrants need our protection,” the Democrat said in a statement. “What the President failed to mention, however, was that this was a crisis of his own making, as he signed off on the memo putting 'dreamers' at risk”
In his State of the Union address, the president called for bipartisanship and collaboration in Congress. But Rhode Island representatives say the President’s first year in office was anything but bipartisan.
“I cannot say that tonight’s speech has given me much hope that the second year of the Trump Administration will be different from the first,” said Langevin.