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Local politics

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    Their neckties were about all that clashed Tuesday dur­ing a debate of the three congressional candidates in Indiana's 3rd District. Second-term Republican Rep.
  • Debate low on conflict
    Their neckties were about all that clashed Tuesday dur­ing a debate of the three congressional candidates in Indiana’s 3rd District.Second-term Republican Rep.
  • Stutzman challengers count on TV debate
    Two long-shot candidates for a seat in Congress say Tuesday’s televised debate offers the best chance for them to lure votes away from Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-3rd.
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Stuztman says Obama speech is 'same worn-out approach'

Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-3rd, dismissed President Barack Obama’s annual State of the Union address as “empty slogans and bigger government.”

“Over the past five years, families have paid a high price for this administration’s broken promises – smaller paychecks, health insurance cancellation letters and fewer jobs,” Stutzman said Tuesday in a statement. “This isn’t what a recovery looks like, but it’s the same worn-out approach the president outlined tonight.”

He said Obama should urge the Democratic Senate to vote on numerous jobs bills passed by House Republicans if the president “is serious about making 2014 a year of action.”

Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., said in a video issued ahead of Obama’s speech saying he wanted to hear the president to talk about programs related to Donnelly’s “Opportunity Agenda” – domestic energy production, job training, government spending for infrastructure and enhancing the climate for U.S. exports and business innovations – as well as measures for preventing military suicides.

“Members of both parties can agree there are few things more important than improving our economy, creating more jobs and taking care of our troops,” Donnelly said in the video.

Obama spoke about each of the four planks of Donnelly’s Opportunity Agenda, but he did not mention military suicides.

Rep. Susan Brooks, R-5th, said in a statement that Obama “presented a vision that relies too heavily on government intervention in the private sector. It’s one that will impose unfair burdens on job creators and the hard working Americans they employ.”

Obama endorsed legislation to raise the hourly minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 and said he would issue an executive order requiring federal contractors to do likewise.

Rep. Luke Messer, R-6th, said in a statement that Obama presented “the same tired solutions that simply are not working: more government, more spending, more taxes and more debt.”

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