McConnell on Obama agenda: 'It just hasn't worked'

 
 
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky.
Susan Walsh / ASSOCIATED PRESS

McClatchy Washington Bureau

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell Tuesday offered a preview of the GOP reaction to the State of the Union address--along with some pointed criticisms.

"At this point," the Kentucky Republican told the Senate, "We’ve seen just about everything in the President’s toolbox. We’ve had a years-long clinic on the failures of liberalism.

“The government stimulus. The taxes. The regulations. The centralization. The government control," McConnell recalled. "It just hasn’t worked."

He cited new polling showing Americans are largely pessimistic. Ladders into the middle class have been kicked away. Sawed off. Regulated into oblivion. This is the legacy of the Obama Economy as we stand here at the start of 2014," McConnell charged. 

 He called President Barack Obama's choice "pretty basic." McConnell asked, “Does he want to be a Hero to the Left, or a Champion for the Middle Class? It can’t be both. He has to choose."

Come work with Republicans, McConnell said.

“He could reach to the center tonight and embrace change over a broken status quo, embrace hope over stale ideology – ideology that’s led not just to stagnant incomes, but to lower median incomes….to dramatic increases in the number of folks forced to take part-time work when what they want is full time work…to greater long-term unemployment…to more poverty," McConnell said.

“He could ask members of both parties to help him make 2014 a real year of action, rather than just a talking point. If he does, he’s going to find he has a lot of support from Republicans. Because we want to work with him to get things done – we always have.

“We’ll be listening closely to see if he’s finally prepared to meet us in the political middle, so we can finally get some important things done for the middle class.

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