Senator McCaskill thinks last night’s State of the Union speech was an “improvement” on previous speeches.   She says it didn’t feel like a pep rally, as some previous messages have felt to her.  “It felt like a serious government that is facing serious problems,” she says.

But she says she disagrees with the President on his spending cut proposals.  She says she’ll continue to push her proposal to cap federal spending.  She says his “freeze” proposal doesn’t go far enough.  McCaskill says his budget freeze doesn’t go far enough and is limited in scope. 

Republican and Democrats sat next to each other during the event, a break from tradition when Republicans and Democrats sat with their own.  She thinks members will never be seated along party lines for future state of the union addresses.

McCaskill thought it interesting that three parties delivered speeches last night. The President, a Democrat, delivered the State of the Union address, with a Republican response, and a Tea Party response afterward.  She’s not sure what that means, but she thinks two is better than three.  “If there are two parties and there are compromises we’ll be able to cut the budget; we’ll be able to make some strategic and smart investments…But if…we get into a rigid ideological position on the far left or the far right, it’s not going to be pretty,” she says.

 Listen to McCaskill’s press teleconference 21:32 mp3