WASHINGTON - Here's DFL Rep. Betty McCollum's reaction to President Obama's State of the Union:
"President Obama clearly outlined the challenges and opportunities we face as a country with job creation being our top priority, and I want help him succeed.
"To create jobs we need to continue investing in education, innovation, research, and rebuilding our vital infrastructure that will strengthen our economy. The jobs of the future will require educated Americans who can successfully compete against China and the rest of the world.
"President Obama is also right to focus on reducing the budget deficit. The best way to reduce the deficit is to grow the economy and create jobs. But Congress needs to make smart investments and smart cuts to programs when they don't work or there is waste - that includes cutting the waste out of the $700 billion annual defense budget.
"The Republican budget plan cuts education, infrastructure, and research that will weaken our economy, kill jobs, and cede global leadership in the 21st Century to China, but they don't fix the budget problem. I want America to win the future, not turn global leadership over to China."