IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - One local politician is weighing in on the president's plans as he gives his State of the Union address Tuesday.
Idaho Falls U.S. congressional candidate Bryan Smith said he would like to hear the president address the nation's economic problems. Smith said with a $17 trillion debt and more government deficit spending, the president needs to sing a different tune.
"Frankly, this is also one of the reasons why I'm running against Mike Simpson (2nd district congress incumbent) because he has supported many of the programs that now added to the debt, higher taxes and larger government," said Smith.
The White House has announced that the president plans to exercise an executive order to raise the minimum wage for federal contract workers, bypassing Congress. Smith said the president's plan to forcefully raise minimum wage isn't the way to go. He said we have far more people unemployed and on food stamps than ever in the country's history. Smith said there is an underlying problem and minimum wage is just a symptom of what he calls an "Obama-economy."
"What we really have is a problem with a government that has over-regulated, it's over-taxing; and it's too large ... There are over 10 million unemployed and there's only a third of that number of jobs available for these people. That's really what the problem is and that's really what he (Obama) should focus on," said Smith.
Smith also said the president should not make his move toward raising the minimum wage without support from Congress. He said the past presidents have gone through the legislative process when getting approval to raise minimum wage and the president should respect that tradition.
"He would be contributing to what could become ultimately a constitutional crisis if President Obama continues to enact laws through executive order. That's why we need to send people to Washington who will stand up and fight this unconstitutional type conduct," he said.