WASHINGTON (WPRI) — Only about 200 people were able to attend President Joe Biden’s first address to Congress Wednesday night, including members of Rhode Island’s and Massachusetts’ congressional delegations.
One Rhode Islander who was able to attend the event was Congressman David Cicilline.
“What was at the heart of it was that this president understands the struggles and challenges and anxieties of working people in this country, of working families, and set forth a series of solutions that are reflected in the bills that he’s put before the Congress,” Cicilline said.
Rhode Island Congressman Jim Langevin released a statement that for the most part applauded the president’s plans, but was also critical of something Biden didn’t include.
“I was disappointed that the president did not lay out an equally bold plan for improving and strengthening cybersecurity,” he said.
Langevin tweeted, “there are brighter days ahead!”
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse called the speech a “hopeful report.”
“I applaud President Biden on the success of his first 100 days,” he said. “I look forward to rebuilding our economy for the benefit of all Americans and I intend to assure that real climate progress is achieved.”
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel had a different take on Biden’s address.
“Joe Biden’s first 100 days in office have been an unqualified failure, including unprecedented attacks on energy workers, a humanitarian crisis at the border and an America-last foreign policy agenda,” McDaniel said.
According to R.I. Senator Jack Reed’s Twitter, he was also able to attend Biden’s speech. While he did not respond to the address, he did mention the historic moment for Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Kamala Harris.
“They are the first women to lead the House & Senate, but certainly not the last,” Reed said.
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren also commented on the historic moment.
“I hope little girls everywhere will be watching — and dreaming big,” she said in a tweet.
Massachusetts Congressman Jake Auchincloss also attended the event.
“As I talked to Democrats, independents and Republicans in my district, they support the American Rescue Plan because they know that it met disaster and it delivered for the American people,” Auchincloss said. “Now the real work begins.”
Mass. Congressman Bill Keating said he is confident Biden’s agenda will be positive for the residents of Massachusetts’ 9th District.
“I am confident that investing in our working families, our children, our community colleges, our infrastructure and so much more will open the doors of opportunity,” he said.