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More than 350 attend Kyl's town hall meeting
More than 350 Yuma citizens gathered at the Kofa High School Auditorium Wednesday evening to participate in a town hall featuring Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz.
Kyl touched on several topics including the threat of terrorism, immigration and government spending.
"The first obligation of the Federal Government is to protect the people of the United States of America," Kyl said during the town hall. "The number one threat to our security these days is the threat from al-Qaida and other groups and from countries like Iran, North Korea and so on."
Kyl is concerned with how rapidly the government is expanding, and the apparent diminishment of liberties.
"(Health Care legislation) is a symptom of a lot of other pieces of legislation that... little by little... increase the control and growth and size of the government," he said. "To the extent that government grows, our rights are diminished. Our founding fathers understood that, and that is why they wanted the government to be controlled by the people."
Kyl wants Americans to be self sufficient.
"Over the years, our citizens have gradually... ceded power to Washington ordinarily to get some kind of benefit, or the relief of some concern to make life easier. A lot of European countries make life very pleasant for you here on Earth, but is that real living? And if you can't take responsibility for the little things, will you ever be able to face up to the challenges when they get here?"
After a brief opening statement, Kyl took questions from attendees who patiently stood in line to get their say.
There were many members in the audience who shared Kyl's concerns about tax and spend policies.
"Stop billing my children's money and stop raising the debt limit... They are bankrupting the country," said Nathan Smith of Yuma. "I am working my (tail) off and they are ruining my children's lives. They are going to be slaves. Not on my watch!"
Kyl agreed saying, "Stop spending. That is it. Politicians love to spend your money in order to do a favor for somebody else. There is the sense that (American dollars) are almost like Monopoly money and we can keep printing it."
One man in the audience asked Kyl about the GOP's strategy to curtail the efforts of the Democrat controlled congress and executive branch.
"First of all our strategy on health care included taking as long as we possibly could so the American people could clearly understand (it).. and it took a year for it to get done," Kyl said, adding they will do their best to slow up any other bills, like immigration reform, in the same manner.
“My guess is, neither (card check and immigration reform) will have the votes to pass. But because political promises have been made to key constituency of the party that is in power, that they’re going to do something about these problems, they will bring up very partisan legislation.
"Republicans will, primarily Republicans, will vote it down, that is to say we will prevent it from coming up through the filibuster, through requiring cloture, and they won’t get 60 votes. And then they’ll be able to blame us for being anti-union or anti-Hispanic or whatever. It’s false, but that’s the political game. But at least those things won’t pass.”
Chris McDaniel can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6849.