It was a State of the Union speech that some Democratic lawmakers decided not to attend, in protest at President Donald Trump’s conduct. Others who were in the chamber for the address left before the end, saying that the president lied.
Among the walkouts, the 5th district's Jahana Hayes, who left the chamber as Trump defended the Second Amendment.
And at least one other member of Connecticut’s congressional delegation said immediately after that he wished he had done something similar.
“That was a disgrace. I should not have gone,” tweeted Senator Chris Murphy. He described the speech as a pep rally, “filled with political stunts and verifiable lie after verifiable lie.”
That was a disgrace. I should not have gone.
It was a re-election pep rally from beginning to end, filled with political stunts and verifiable lie after verifiable lie.
I get it - presidents use their last SOTU to make the case for re-election. But that crossed a line.
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) February 5, 2020
His Senate colleague Richard Blumenthal tweeted that the speech was a “fantasy reality show.”
“The small gestures toward bipartisanship included in this speech were vastly outweighed by lies about health care, incendiary insults about immigrants and fake boasts claiming credit for economic progress,” said Blumenthal.
Connecticut’s House delegation was similarly damning.
Rep. Jim Himes noted one of the speech's more surprisng moments, the award of the Presidential Medal of Freedom to conservative talk show host, Rush Limbaugh.
Rush Limbaugh gets the medal of Freedom in the House Chamber. Right in the middle of #SOTU
Definitely would not have predicted that.
Apparently Rush doesn’t get an acceptance speech.
New rules. #StateOfTheUnion
— Jim Himes (@jahimes) February 5, 2020
Rep. John Larson said he wants to see Trump turn his attention to saving social security -- one of the 1st District representative’s signature issues.
“Tonight, President Trump touted an economy that’s illusionary,” said Larson in a statement. “It works for the wealthy, but it is an illusion for the middle-class. His economic policies are leaving the majority of Americans behind. He’s been focused on the stock market and 401k’s, while neglecting the inequality and economic insecurity faced by too many.”
The 3rd District’s Rosa DeLauro took issue with Trump’s claim that he is safeguarding American’s health care.
“President Trump’s claim that he will always protect those with pre-existing conditions is a lie—plain and simple,” she tweeted during the speech.”His administration is in court right now trying to remove those protections by gutting the Affordable [Care] Act.”