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Saying complacency is the biggest threat to America, Second Congressional District Representative Markwayne Mullin spoke to some 35 Henryetta area residents Thursday night.
Mullin was hosting one of his district-wide town hall meetings at the civic center.
mullin-meeting He pointed out the record low Oklahoma voter turnout last November was a shame. "People think our voice doesn't matter," he said. "It is our honor, our duty, our privilege to vote."
He pointed out part of the problem is reports of the bickering and fighting that goes on between elected officials in Washington, D.C. ""We are taught to respect someone else's opinion. In politics, if you don't agree with me you are an idiot," he gave as an example.
Mullen urged the audience to give people respect and listen to their opinion, "then it's OK to disagree."
When a former city council candidate claimed the low town hall turnout was because city officials don't promote the meetings, Mullin replied, "People have to do their part." he said notice of the meeting had been put in the newspaper, on Thehenryettan.com website and social media. "If people want to know, they will find out."
Talking about government spending, Mullin said the government has cut out around $1 trillion. "We are down to the hard stuff now." He said the next step is cutting entitlement reforms. That is project that he estimated would take ten years to, "wean people off. We are putting a tremendous amount of money into our economy which is a false economy."
He pointed out that, if the money was cut off at one time, it would result in a recession. For the first four years of this balanced budget there will be a sharp decline in spending. In the ninth or tenth year we will hit the balanced budget."
He said the Affordable Care Act was supposed to be budget-neutral but now is expected to cost over $2 trillion in the next decade. He said the remedy would be to repeal and replace parts of the budget. "We have put so many people on medicaid you got to have attrition to take care of it."
Legislation on the Patriot Act is going on in Washington but Mullin predicted it would pass in the Senate but not in the House. "It infringes on some of our liberties."
He brought up a bill called the 21st Century bill that is expected to help get medication on the markets quicker. Mullin said there are some cases where studies keep medication off the market up to 18 years even though those same drugs are sold now in Europe.
"We can't use the European studies. We have to get to the point where we do." He said today's business environment is not conducive to entrepreneurs. "It will take all of us to rein in the government," he said.
The Congressman said more oversight of federal agencies is needed. He told the audience that, even though Congress may cut budgets to some agencies, they continue to operate with money from fines to offset those appropriations. "They run rogue. We cut some of them 20, 30, 40 percent yet they continue to spend at the same level."
He pointed out the president appoints heads of those agencies and, "they directly report to him," even though Congress is responsible for allocating funds for their operations.

See the video of the entire town hall meeting here.