In four years or so, students at Madison Middle School will be old enough to vote, said Assistant Principal Scott Anderson. He spoke after a question-and-answer “town hall meeting” in the school’s auditorium Monday with Republican congressional candidate Andy Barr, who is seeking the seat now held by Rep. Ben Chandler, D-Sixth District.
“In four years, I hope you make that decision that you’re going to become a voter and you’re going to listen to both sides,” Anderson said to the students before the meeting adjourned.
“Have you ever heard about the American Dream?” Barr asked the students following a short summary about his career as a lawyer and his teaching job at Morehead State University.
One girl replied, “The American dream means that we have the best country in the whole wide world.”
Barr explained the American Dream is that “we leave the country better than we inherited it,” he said, and one thing that threatens that dream is the national debt, which is over $16 trillion.
“One trillion dollars is a thousand billions, a billion is a thousand millions, so that’s a lot of money. So there’s 16 of those that we as a country owes,” he explained. “If we don’t start forcing the government to live within its means and start paying down that national debt. That really will, I think, jeopardize the American dream.”
Barr spent the rest of the hour answering questions from the students, who had the opportunity to stand and speak into a microphone.
Student questions and Barr’s answers
Who do you think will win the presidential election?
“I do support Mitt Romney, but I think there are a lot of good people in this country who support Barack Obama, too. I think as Americans, we’ve got good choices in front of us. We’ve got two well-meaning people who want to help the country. We have different ideas about how to fix our country’s problems, but obviously, there’s a lot of Americans on both sides of the issues ... I do support Mitt Romney and that’s not a secret. But I think whether you’re a Democrat or Republican, that we as Americans, after the election, come together and fix our problems.”