Following President Obama’s State of the Union address, U.S. Rep. Bill Foster released the following statement:
“As a businessman, I know that the key to a thriving economy is a strong middle class. After facing a devastating blow four years ago, our economy has been slowly improving, but it will only continue on the right track if we invest in programs that will strengthen and grow the middle class.
“This means investing in education and job training and preparing workers for the jobs of today. As the President said, this also means making America a magnet for jobs and manufacturing. With some luck, ingenuity and just $500, my brother and I were able to start a manufacturing business out of our parents’ basement that now employs over 500 people. Every American should have that same opportunity to succeed.
“To give others that opportunity and strengthen the middle class, we need to protect our businesses and innovators from the growing threat of cyber-attacks and intellectual property theft. I was pleased to see the President address the issue of cyber security which is not just important for national security, but for protecting our manufacturers and intellectual property.
“We also have to fix our broken immigration system with comprehensive immigration reform that secures our borders, streamlines our legal immigration system and provides a tough but fair path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the country.
“Last November voters sent a clear message – they’re fed up with the political brinksmanship and ready for Congress to act to fix the challenges we face. We’ve got to stop making short-term fixes and start making long term investments that will grow our economy and strengthen the middle class.
“I hope that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will follow President Obama’s call to reinvest in the middle class.”