Ahead of President Biden’s State of the Union (SOTU) address, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) spoke on the Senate floor to slam President Biden’s failed record during his first year in office—from skyrocketing inflation and supply chain disruptions, to his foreign policy doctrine of appeasement with Russia and other U.S. adversaries. Ernst contrasted Biden’s crises with Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds’ proven leadership, including her work to cut taxes, reopen schools, and stand up for Iowa families.
Senator Ernst’s full remarks are below:
“Tonight, the president will deliver the annual State of the Union Address and I have to admit, as a result of President Biden’s policies over the past year, nearly everything is looking up.
“Consumer prices – up!
“Violent crime – up!
“The national debt, illegal border crossings, fatal drug overdoses, our trade deficit — they are all up!
“But what isn’t up is the public’s view of the President and his policies.
“In poll after poll, the majority of Americans disapprove of the job President Biden is doing.
“On nearly every key issue facing the country, Americans by and large just do not think Mr. Biden is up to the job.
“And more than two-thirds of Americans lack confidence that President Biden can bring the country closer together — something he promised the American people he would do.
“Folks, this is really no surprise, since it is, after all, the president’s unpopular, partisan policies that are driving Americans further apart.
“President Biden may try to mask himself as a moderate, but no one is being fooled.
“Behind the mask, the real Biden agenda is more mandates from Washington, higher prices for all Americans, and less security at home and abroad.
“As a direct result of mandates imposed by this administration, for example, thousands of health care workers have lost their jobs at a time when we need them more than ever.
“And because of the massive amount of money being printed in Washington, inflation is soaring at the fastest pace in 40 years.
“The cost of food, gas, housing, and just about everything else, is significantly more expensive today than it was before President Biden was sworn into office.
“The president chose Left-wing climate fantasies over national security.
“His doctrine of appeasement has resulted in America becoming more dependent on foreign adversaries, like Russia, for the energy necessary to heat our homes and keep our country on the move.
“And with the Russian military on the march in Europe, and terrorists in control of Afghanistan once again, the national and economic security of our nation, has been set back decades.
“It’s really quite stunning – and gravely concerning – what an incredible mess President Biden has created in such a short period of time.
“Yet, the White House is attempting to convince the American people that everything is fine.
“The president called his hastily ordered exit from Afghanistan an ‘extraordinary success’ despite leaving thousands of Americans and allies behind.
“And the Biden Administration has repeatedly denied that rising prices and empty shelves are even a problem, while fanning the flames of inflation with out-of-control spending.
“Folks, if simply printing money could solve the problems before us, we would be living in utopia right now since Washington spent nearly $7 trillion last year alone!
“Instead, every American is feeling the pinch of Bidenomics because spending is not the solution, it is the problem!
“And you would think in light of Putin’s aggression, and the threats from other adversaries, our commander-in-chief would be focused on strengthening and modernizing our defenses.
“Instead, funding for the Department of Defense is being held hostage by the president and Democrats in Congress until the widely-popular, 50 year old ban on taxpayer-funding for abortions is repealed.
“Folks, is this really the time to play abortion politics with our nation’s security?
“Having spent the last half century in Washington, President Biden is totally out of touch with the everyday needs of Iowa families, and the world around us has become much more dangerous under his watch.
“Just remember as you listen to his address, every time the president proposes increasing Washington spending, that translates into higher prices and taxes for you.
“Every new government expansion the president proposes means more Washington mandates and control over you.
“And no matter who he blames for the security crises we are in now, it is the president’s poor decisions and lack of leadership that continue to make our nation less safe at home and abroad.
“To get our nation moving in the right direction, we need a forward-looking, freedom-first agenda.
“To ensure our families have, and can afford, the food and essentials they need, the supply chain must be fixed.
To prepare our children for the future, we need schools to be a place of learning, not woke indoctrination.
“To protect our nation from foreign threats, we need to ensure U.S. energy independence and the strength of our military remains unmatched.
“And to form a more perfect union, Washington needs to stop micromanaging how we live our lives and start abiding by the most important mandates in America, the ones listed in our Constitution’s Bill of Rights, which protect us from government intrusion.
“These goals don’t represent a partisan platform, but rather an inclusive agenda for all Americans that puts each one of us back in charge of the direction of our own lives.
“It’s a vision based on freedom, liberty, and opportunity.
“Folks, I know this vision works because that is exactly what is happening in my home state of Iowa under the leadership of our governor, my friend, Kim Reynolds.
“She has led with Iowa commonsense and compassion, since day one.
“Right now, Governor Reynolds is expanding opportunities for everyone by cutting taxes to help families and small businesses.
“She’s standing up for our freedoms, putting our kids first, and ensuring parents have their voices heard.
“Under her leadership, Iowa was the first state to reopen our schools during this pandemic.
“Governor Reynolds is pushing back on the massive Washington overreach from President Biden and standing up for our way of life.
“And she’s fighting to keep the Left’s woke agenda out of Iowa.
“Folks, Governor Kim Reynolds is the perfect choice for the Republican response to tonight’s State of the Union address.
“And her record of success in Iowa is the ideal contrast to life in Joe Biden’s America.
“Things are not ‘fine,’ folks. You and I know that — we feel that every day.
“But Governor Reynolds’ – her leadership and her vision for a better future – leaves me optimistic about what lies ahead for America.”