Oklahoma delegation widely pans president's State of the Union address

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Reaction Tuesday to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address by members of Oklahoma's congressional delegation:
 
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Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla.
 
"At tonight's State of the Union, Oklahoma was proudly represented by Gary Bird, the Fire Chief for Moore, Oklahoma, who was seated with the First Lady. Bird has faithfully served Oklahomans as a firefighter since 1981, and led us through a difficult, deadly tornado season this past May. Bird and his fellow first responders are Oklahoma's true heroes.
 
"Tonight, President Obama presented his hopes for 2014, one that will include him using a `pen and phone' to get work done. But these tactics are not new to President Obama. He used this strategy in 2013 when his administration issued thousands of pages of healthcare regulations and job-killing EPA regulations. This excessive power grab is all part of Obama's expanding government where power is increasingly in the hands of unelected bureaucrats instead of the American people.
 
"President Obama made clear tonight he plans for more of the same this year and will continue to bypass Congress. Americans will see this play out with his Climate Action Plan he unveiled last summer. Through this plan, he will aim to curb greenhouse gas emissions at the cost of economic growth and job creation - a plan similar to Cap-and-Trade."
 
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Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Okla.
 
"Once again, President Obama focused his State of the Union address on the nation's sluggish economy and unemployment problems. He made these same issues the focal point in previous speeches; however, Americans have yet to see him produce a plan that puts the jobless back to work and boosts the economy. This time, I hope the president will actually fulfill the promises he made to the American people in his speech tonight.
 
"In order for the president to move forward and create economic certainty, he must make reducing government spending his top priority. Our national debt stands at an outstanding $17.3 trillion and is increasing at an average of $2.5 billion per day. Since the president took office in 2009, the debt has increased by more than $6 trillion, and Americans have continuously expressed their concerns with the country's out of control spending. The president must realize the federal government has a spending problem, and he must work with Congress to make significant cuts to help address the U.S. debt crises.
 
"In addition, the president must quit ignoring the many opportunities we have to create jobs in America. For instance, he has failed to approve of the northern leg of the Keystone XL Pipeline, which has the potential to produce tens of thousands of jobs in our country. In the House, we have voted seven separate times to move forward with construction; however, the president and Senate have refused to act on this shovel-ready project."
 
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Rep. James Lankford, R-Okla.
 
"The State of the Union did not answer the real questions the American people want to know: why have their wages continued to drag and economic growth seemed so slow? People want jobs and opportunity, not federal mandates, government programs and rhetoric. Parents dream that their children will have a better future, not a better place in line at a government agency. ...
 
"The constitutional purpose of the State of the Union is for Congress to hear -- from time to time -- the recommendations from the President that he deems `necessary and expedient.' Instead, I heard a political stump speech for the fourth year in a row. I heard no constructive recommendations to Congress or the American people to reduce our debt, remove federal barriers to economic growth or strengthen our families."
 
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Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla.
 
"The President confirmed tonight that his bipartisan talking points are hollow. His willingness to circumvent Congress, the clear representation of the American people and American values, shows his agenda of hope and change is just rhetoric.  Threatening ultimatums for if and when Congress doesn't act contradicts our founding principles. Forcing an executive agenda, without constructive conversation, creates a divided nation. Let's sit down with our nation's best interests in mind and come to bipartisan solutions that put America back in business."
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