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Statement from CBC Chairman on Trump SOTU Address

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Washington, January 30, 2018 | comments

Today, the Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, Congressman Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA-02), released the following statement in response to President Trump’s State of the Union Address:

“There is nothing promising about President Trump’s ability to read a speech from a teleprompter.

“Every action taken by him over the past year has been destructive for poor, working-class, and middle-class communities throughout this country, as well as communities of color. He said nothing tonight that wipes that slate clean.

“He boasts about a booming economy, but it is not something he can take credit for. Much like the money he inherited from his father to start his business, President Trump inherited a growing economy from President Obama. The low black unemployment rate he boasted about has been falling for eight years and has only changed by one percent since he took office. In addition, while the black unemployment rate is at an historic low, it is still double the rate of white unemployment and doesn’t take into account the fact that African Americans are disproportionately underemployed and underpaid.

“But that’s not all. The tax cut he boasts about will be paid for by cutting programs that disproportionately serve the poor and working-class communities, as well as communities of color. In addition, while his infrastructure proposal sounds good, we know that it will be more of the same: toll roads, reduced federal cost-share, and giveaways to his wealthy friends in the construction industry. It is important to note that he said nothing about contracting with minority firms.  

“Finally, we heard the same racist rhetoric on immigration that we’ve heard from him since the campaign. We know from these comments and the ‘shithole’ comments he made about Africa and Haiti recently that the only immigrants he thinks are worthy of coming to this country are white ones. 

“The Congressional Black Caucus can now answer the question he posed to the African-American community in 2016 with 100 percent certainty: African Americans have a lot to lose under the Trump Administration and we have lost a lot already, especially when it comes to his justice, voting rights, education, housing, and healthcare policies.

“President Trump is still who we thought he was and we won’t be fooled by this speech.” 

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