Cummings Applauds President's Focus on Middle Class Economics

January 21, 2015
Press Release


Washington, D.C. (Jan. 20, 2015)—Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (MD-07), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, issued the following statement after the 2014 State of the Union Address:
“One of the greatest threats facing our nation is the shrinking middle class.  We cannot continue to be the land of opportunity if those aspiring to the middle class are unable to reach it, and I applaud the President’s attention to this crisis.
“President Obama has worked hard to bring our economy back from the Great Recession, and his leadership has led to an unemployment rate lower than 6% for the first time since 2008 — even in the face of GOP obstruction.  Most of those gains, however, have only been felt on Wall Street and among the nation’s top earners.
“The President’s plan to provide an additional tax credit to middle class families will ensure that they too feel the benefit of a resurgent U.S. economy in their wallets.  And his plans to give qualified students the ability to enroll in community colleges free of cost will strengthen one of the most important ladders into the middle class — higher education.
“The President’s remarks covered a number of other issues of great importance to our country, domestically and internationally, but there are two that deserve intense scrutiny by the White House and Congress in the coming months.
“We must focus on reforming our criminal justice system. Recent events in Ferguson, Staten Island, and elsewhere have shaken the American people’s trust not just in the police who keep our streets safe, but in the judicial process that holds them accountable.  We need to continue the national dialogue about how we restore that trust, and we need attention from all levels of government to craft policies that promote community engagement with law enforcement and accountability for officers.
“We must also focus on protecting American consumers from the unprecedented and increasing number of data breaches in both the public and private sectors.  The President’s legislative proposals are important first steps, but we need additional Congressional oversight — something I will continue to call for in the 114th Congress.

“I look forward to working with President Obama and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle on all of these priorities in the coming months.”