WASHINGTON -- Idaho Republican Reps. Mike Simpson and Raul Labrador gave a thumbs-up to President Donald Trump for striking a positive tone, but both worried that his spending plans might not add up.
Trump wants Congress to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure projects, pass big tax cuts, approve a 10 percent increase in military spending and offer a better health care system for all Americans.
“You know the devil is in the details --- there weren’t a lot of details in this,” Simpson said in an interview after Trump addressed a joint session of Congress for the first time. But he said that should not come as a surprise since Trump has only been president for five weeks: “The reality is five weeks isn’t very long.”
Labrador said he’ll be looking for more specifics when the president releases his budget.
“A lot of it doesn’t add up right now,” he said in an interview. “And the details need to be worked out.”
But both Simpson and Labrador said Trump gave one of his best speeches, perhaps the best they’d ever heard him deliver.
“I think he actually moved the ball quite a bit because a lot of people were expecting a different speech and a different president, but he looked as presidential as he’s ever looked and he really connected with people, “ Labrador said.
While Trump wants to pay for a $54 billion military increase by an equal offset in spending for nonmilitary programs, Simpson, a member of the House Appropriations Committee, expressed skepticism.
“It’ll be tough,” he said.
Idaho's GOP senators released statements assessing Trump’s performance.
"Tonight, President Trump did a great job of outlining the vision he has for America and Americans - a vision shared by many presidents who have served before him,” said Sen. Jim Risch.
And Sen. Mike Crapo said that Trump “laid forth an ambitious, optimistic agenda that has great promise for our nation.