Members of Connecticut’s all-Democratic congressional delegation are offering mixed reviews to Republican President Donald Trump’s joint speech to Congress Tuesday night.
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty says values Trump spoke of, like standing up to special interests, securing national defense, and investing in infrastructure, are values shared by all Americans. “However, they’re at odds with the policies he has put in place and with the people he’s appointed in his first five weeks in office, so I’m going to be looking forward to seeing what he actually does.”
Esty offered a measured response to Trump's calls for immigration reform.
“I would love to see comprehensive immigration reform, but I will note who he put in the First Lady’s box were four people who he said were people who were victims of crime by illegal immigrants as he phrased it. And that suggests an ongoing animosity towards and fear of people not originally from this country.”
Esty’s guest last night was Waterbury Police Chief Vernon Riddick, whose district includes Newtown. Esty says she heard no new ideas on solutions to gun violence, and she remains concerned about efforts to deregulate silencers and weaken conceal and carry protections in place in Connecticut.
Senator Richard Blumenthal says that he’s willing to work with the administration and Republicans in Congress, but he wants specific details on how progress can be made.
“I welcome the call for unity, but at the same time, most of this speech was empty promises and vacuous platitudes, and I want to know how specifically he will accomplish these goals.”
Congressman John Larson also agreed with the call for unity, but felt Trump’s speech contained more rhetoric than specifics.
“I’m one of those people that says if he’s willing to work with us, we certainly have our sleeves rolled up, but as I said on the onset, he beared long on rhetoric and very short on specifics.”
This report contains information from CRN.