TEXARKANA, Texas — A capacity audience attended a town hall meeting held by U.S. Rep. Pat Fallon on Wednesday at Texarkana College and heard his views on a wide range of issues.
Fallon, R-Sherman, stopped in Texarkana as part of an itinerary of meetings with constituents throughout the Congressional district he represents, Texas' 4th, that will continue today with a private tour of Red River Army Depot and another town hall in Blossom, Texas.
His Texarkana audience filled about 200 chairs set up in the Great Room of TC's Truman Arnold Student Center and included a number of local elected and other officials.
Fallon promised a "no holds barred" town hall. Before answering audience questions, he spoke about working in Washington, D.C., since taking office Jan. 3, using most of his time to criticize Democratic members of Congress, President Joe Biden and their policy agenda.
Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi "has a whip and she cracks it," Fallon said, noting the narrowness of Democrats' majority in Congress.
"She made it very clear from the onset that she wasn't going to govern in any kind of bipartisan fashion because quite frankly, she didn't need to. And that's what we've been enjoying for the last five months. It's a difficult environment to work in. But nonetheless, you elected me to be a fighter, and you elected me to do your bidding," he said.
Fallon focused on two bills passed by the House, an election reform package called HR1, which failed in the Senate, and HR1319, the COVID relief bill Democrats passed through both chambers without Republican support through a process called budget reconciliation.
Named by Democrats the For the People Act, HR1 "should be called the For the Politicians act," he said. "That was a horrible bill because it federalized elections. And that's never a good idea. We have 50 states for a reason, different laboratories of democracy."
HR1319 included too much spending unrelated to COVID relief and was not passed in bipartisan fashion, he said.
"Nearly every Republican, in fact, on a lot of these bills, every Republican member voted against it. That's not healthy for the country, and that's not having input. Also, we had already allocated $4 trillion to COVID relief, and a trillion dollars — read 1,000 billions — had been yet to be spent. And they wanted to spend another 1.9 trillion," Fallon said.
Other topics Fallon touched on included defunding the police, which he said "takes the cake" as one of the worst ideas he has heard, his opposition to statehood for Washington, D.C., and border security and illegal immigration, which he called "absolutely a crisis" brought on by the Biden administration that leads to drug and human trafficking.
"Let's honor all of our ancestors. Let's honor the people that came before us. Because not only do we live in the right country — a where — but we live in a when. There's never been a better place and time to live in this country than 2021," he said.