Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds delivers GOP response to Biden's SOTU address: 'Enough is enough'

Democrats hope State of the Union helps with a course correction before the midterms: Pergram

Fox News correspondent Chad Pergram has the latest on Biden’s State of the Union address on ‘Special Report.’

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) took to the airwaves Tuesday night to offer a blistering response to President Biden’s State of the Union address – calling him out on a number of issues which have created economic hardships for Americans, including rising inflation, a surge in crime across American cities, his response to COVID-19, and ongoing international crises.

“Instead of moving America forward, it feels like President Biden and his party have sent us back in time to the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.” Reynolds said. “When runaway inflation was hammering families, a violent crime wave was crashing on our cities, and the Soviet army was trying to redraw the world map.”

“Even before taking the oath of office, the President told us that he wanted to ‘make America respected around the world again and to unite us here at home,’” Reynolds continued. “He’s failed on both fronts.”

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds delivers her Condition of the State address before a joint session of the Iowa Legislature, on Jan. 11, 2022, at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa.
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

Reynolds – who has pushed back against the Biden administration on a variety of issues, notably COVID-19 mandates – said the president’s “disastrous” withdrawal from Afghanistan “did more than cost American lives” as it “betrayed our allies and emboldened our enemies.”

Reynolds, noting Biden’s “too little, too late” approach to foreign policy, discussed the ongoing turmoil in Europe, calling Russia’s “full-scale” invasion into Ukraine “an attack on democracy, freedom, and the rule of law.”

“Now all Americans must stand united in solidarity with the brave people of Ukraine as they courageously defend their country against Putin’s tyranny,” Reynolds said, noting the importance of America’s “military readiness.”

Taking aim at Democrats, Reynolds said Biden and his party “have spent the last year either ignoring the issues facing Americans or making them worse.”

“They were warned that spending trillions would lead to soaring inflation,” she said. “They were told their anti-energy policies would send gas prices to new heights. But they plowed ahead anyway, raising the price at the pump by 50% and pushing inflation to a 40-year high.”

“When I took the oath of office five years ago, I promised Iowans that I would never lose sight of who I was working for,” Reynolds said. 

“That I wouldn’t become detached from the problems they were facing, from the problems I had faced myself. But you don’t have to check groceries to see what high inflation does to people. You just need to step outside the D.C. Bubble. Talk to Americans about what’s on their mind. Ask them: What are your concerns? What keeps you up at night?”

President Biden walks with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of N.Y., left, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., right, as he arrives at the U.S. Capitol on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022, in Washington.
(Stefani Reynolds/Pool via AP)

“Thankfully the President’s agenda didn’t pass, because even members of his own party said enough is enough,” she said. “Well, the American people share that view. Enough is enough.”

Reynolds said Americans are tired of a “political class” attempting to “remake this country into a place where an elite few tell everyone else what they can and cannot say” and what they “can and cannot believe.”

“They’re tired of people pretending the way to end racism is by categorizing everybody by their race,” the Iowa governor added. 

“They’re tired of politicians who tell parents they should sit down, be silent, and let government control their kids’ education and future. Frankly, they’re tired of the theater. Where politicians do one thing when the cameras are rolling and another when they believe you can’t see them.”

Highlighting hypocrisy from Democrats, Reynolds said Americans are frustrated with governors and mayors who “enforce mandates but don’t follow them,” as well as elected leaders who “tell their citizens to stay home while they sneak off to Florida for sun and fun” and “demand that your child wear a mask, but they go out maskless.”

Noting a spike in crime, Reynolds said the Department of Justice “treats parents like domestic terrorists but looters and shoplifters roam free,” leaving working-class Americans to “feel like they’re the enemy.”

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during a news conference at Iowa Spring Manufacturing, Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021, in Adel, Iowa.
(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

“This is not the same country it was a year ago,” Reynolds said. “The president tried to paint a different picture tonight, but his actions over the last twelve months don’t match the rhetoric. It’s not what he promised when he took office. But it doesn’t have to be this way. There is an alternative.”

Wrapping up her response, Reynolds targeted the administration for its handling of the pandemic as it relates to school children and its unwillingness to “provide the resources to stop human trafficking. To stop the staggering influx of deadly drugs coming into our neighborhoods.”

“Republican governors faced the same Covid-19 virus head on,” she said. “But we honored your freedoms and saw right away that lockdowns and school closures came with their own significant costs – that mandates weren’t the answer. And we actually listened to the science, especially with kids in masks and kids in schools. What happened – and is still happening – to our children over the last two years is unconscionable. Learning loss. Isolation. Anxiety. Depression. In so many states, our kids have been left behind and many will never catch up.”

“I’m blessed to be the Governor of Iowa, where people are humble, hard-working, and patriotic,” Reynolds concluded. “We take care of each other. And yes, we are, as they say, Iowa Nice. But you don’t have to be from Iowa to see that those are the values of America at its best—all of America.”

Since taking office last year, Biden has faced a number of crises in America and abroad. Rising inflation and other burdens placed on the American people due to the Biden administration’s handling of the pandemic have plagued the country’s economic recovery.

A recent Fox News poll showed that only 31% of voters are satisfied with the direction the country is heading. Additionally, 58% of the poll’s respondents said that the country is worse off today than it was at the same time a year ago.

President Joe Biden delivers remarks about his Build Back Better agenda and the bipartisan infrastructure deal during a speech from the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., October 28, 2021.
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

On the economy, 24% of voters say it is in excellent or good shape, down from 29% earlier in Biden’s term (April 2021). Three times as many, 76%, say economic conditions are only fair or poor.

On the individual level, 50% feel like they have less money in their pocket compared to a year ago. Few, 14%, say they have more cash, while for 36% there’s no difference.  Those who feel they’ve been hit hardest include working class Whites (60%), rural voters (58%), independents (54%), suburban women (52%), and voters with income under $50K (52%).

In addition, large numbers say higher prices for groceries (77%), gas (72%), and utilities (70%) are a financial hardship for their family.  A smaller number (57%), though still a majority, call increasing housing costs a hardship.

Fox News’ Dana Blanton contributed to this article.

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