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Senate Republicans Respond to Obama’s Inaugural: ‘The Era of Liberalism Is Back’

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call(WASHINGTON) -- Senate Republicans on Capitol Hill Tuesday tore into President Obama’s second inaugural address, labeling it as “liberal,” “disturbing,” and “disappointing.”

“One thing that’s pretty clear from the president’s speech yesterday — the era of liberalism is back,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., declared after meeting with the Republican caucus Tuesday afternoon.  “An unabashedly far-left-of-center inauguration speech certainly brings back memories of the Democratic Party of ages past.”

Senate Republicans argued that discussion over spending and debt were given “short shift” in an inaugural speech that spent more time on climate change and gay rights.

“I think it was quite disturbing,” McConnell said. “I think the president’s inaugural address was disappointing in the sense that it was basically a liberal agenda, directed at an America that we still believe is center-right. And I don’t think that’s a great way to start off a second term if your idea here is to achieve bipartisan solutions.”

Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., echoed his sentiment.

“We were reminded yesterday that this is a liberal president with a liberal agenda,” Sen. Thune said, “which is why the words ‘spending’ and ‘debt’ probably weren’t included in that speech.”

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