Colodradoan: Bennet listens to concerns at town meeting

Tom Jackson of Fort Collins was a lonely Republican voice Saturday at a town hall meeting with Sen. Michael Bennet, but he wasn’t shy about sharing his opinion.

“Both parties have got to quit spending money we don’t have because I’ve got a 2½-year-old grandson and that kid hasn’t got a prayer of having a life if stuff doesn’t change,” Jackson, who owns a welding and fabrication business, told Bennet at the town hall meeting at Catalyst Coffee, 3501 S. Shields St.

Bennet, who was appointed to the Senate last year by Gov. Bill Ritter and will face Republican Ken Buck in November, agreed with Jackson. He repeatedly emphasized the magnitude of the challenge of reducing the deficit.

“It is a very real issue because our annual budget at the federal level is 17 percent non-defense discretionary spending, it’s 18 percent defense spending and 65 percent is essentially Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and interest on our debt,” Bennet said.

“And guess what, the revenue we collect covers the Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. So every school that we invest in federally, every bomber that we build, everything that Ken Salazar does at the Interior Department, all of that is being borrowed from our children,” he said. “Or to put it more precisely, it’s being borrowed from the Chinese, who are then going to stick our children with the bill.”

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