Three Colorado congressmen hold telephone town halls

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Three Colorado Republican lawmakers held telephone town hall meetings Wednesday night.

Sen. Cory Gardner, Rep. Scott Tipton, and Rep. Doug Lamborn answered a wide range of questions from their constituents, from what to expect regarding healthcare to funding for Planned Parenthood.

One of the callers was from Peyton. He said the military is the best-run government entity, and the VA is the worst. He then asked when he would see better leadership at our local VA. Lamborn responded by agreeing with the caller and saying there is too much red tape and that the VA needs to be restructured completely.

“The structure is not really set up the way it should be that the VA simply can’t perform its mission to the satisfaction of veterans, and too many veterans, unfortunately, have fallen through the cracks,” Lamborn said. “I’ve introduced a bill, HR 611, to introduce more VA accountability into the system and to modernize the appeals process. Please take a look at that HR 611, but in general, we need to make it easier for people who are not performing to be fired. Right now, it’s almost impossible.”

Later in the evening, Gardner answered a lot of similar questions. He was also asked about border security. Gardner said we need to have a vetting system in place to make sure people coming into the United States do not pose harm to this country, but he disagreed with some of Trump’s ideas on how to do that.

“I opposed the initial executive order because it was overreaching and broad and affected those who had a legal right to be here, and that was unacceptable,” Gardner said. “And I’ll continue to speak out when these types of issuances occur. As far as the wall goes, I believe we have to have border security, but I do think billions of dollars on a wall is not the right way to proceed. I don’t support a tariff to pay for any kind of a wall. If we need security on the border, whether that’s personnel–we do need security on the border, but that may mean personnel, that may mean a fence, that may mean an electronic fence, but we shouldn’t build a wall at billions of dollars because that’s what somebody said should be done.”

Regarding taking funding away from Planned Parenthood, both Lamborn and Gardner said their goal is to avoid using taxpayer money to pay for abortions, and that federal money that currently goes to Planned Parenthood would be redirected to community health centers, which are more prevalent in Colorado than Planned Parenthood offices.

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