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State of the Union: Mitch Daniels Delivers GOP Response

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State of the Union: Mitch Daniels Delivers GOP Response

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, in the Republican response to President Obama’s State of the Union address, acknowledged that the president was not responsible for the recession, but said Mr. Obama has “held back” the economy and is making the U.S. debt situation “radically worse.”

In a speech that lasted less than 15 minutes, Daniels delivered the Republican rebuttal from the auditorium stage of the Indiana War Memorial building in Indianapolis.

“The president did not cause the economic and fiscal crises that continue in America tonight. But he was elected on a promise to fix them, and he cannot claim that the last three years have made things anything but worse: the percentage of Americans with a job is at the lowest in decades. One in five men of prime working age, and nearly half of all persons under 30, did not go to work today,” Daniels said.

“The president’s grand experiment in trickle-down government has held back rather than sped economic recovery. He seems to sincerely believe we can build a middle class out of government jobs paid for with borrowed dollars. In fact, it works the other way: a government as big and bossy as this one is maintained on the backs of the middle class, and those who hope to join it,” Daniels said.

On the topic of the debt, Daniels lambasted what he called an “unprecedented explosion of spending” which added “trillions to an already unaffordable national debt.”

“And yet, the President has put us on a course to make it radically worse in the years ahead,” he added. “No nation, no entity, large or small, public or private, can thrive, or survive intact, with debts as huge as ours.”

Fully aware that 2012 is an election year with the White House and the balance of House and Senate majorities on the line, Daniels offered a doomsday scenario.

“So 2012 is a year of true opportunity, maybe our last, to restore an America of hope and upward mobility, and greater equality,” he said.