“Tonight, we heard President Obama spell out a clear agenda to jump-start job creation and outline his vision for an American economy that’s built to last. Even though we’ve seen 3.2 million private-sector jobs created over the last two years, too many of our friends and neighbors are still looking for work. The president rightfully highlighted the need to strengthen the middle class by refocusing on American manufacturing, American energy, skills for American workers and housing for American families.
“I was especially pleased to hear the president announce the formation of a new mortgage crisis unit to investigate mortgage misconduct and illegal activities on the part of big banks and mortgage lenders. The housing market collapse devastated our economy, and while we have recovered since the depths of the crash, we’re still nowhere near where we need to be. California, in particular, remains especially hard hit by the foreclosure crisis, and an investigation into mortgage misconduct and wrongdoing by lenders is long overdue.
“I was also encouraged to hear the president raise the issue of income equality and how to ensure everyone gets a fair shot and everyone does their fair share. In order to preserve the promise of America, every worker should be able to provide for their family, send their kids to college and save for their retirement.
“Finally, the president called on Congress to work together to get things done for the American people. I know my constituents across the Central Coast are demanding that we always put the public good over political ambitions. We must live up to that simple challenge.”
— Ashley Schapitl is press secretary for Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara.