"Is the federal government living within the constraints of the U.S. Constitution? Is it doing the things it's allowed to do?"
U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran said that's the most common complaint he hears from constituents as he travels across the state. Moran spent time in Halstead Thursday morning visiting with constituents about those issues, and others, during a town hall meeting. Moran told attendees it was important for elected officials to listen to the concerns of voters.
"Most of what I know about things comes from the conversations I have with Kansans," he said.
Moran, a long-time Kansan, is in his third year as a U.S. Senator representing Kansas. He said he sees the nation's greatest challenge as its fiscal condition and debt. He believes the executive branch has been growing in scope and power and the United States does not always live within the Constitution.
Another hot topic is health care, in particular the Affordable Care Act. Although he wants health care to be more affordable and accessible, he did not vote for the Affordable Care Act and thinks it has damaged the economy. He is in favor of more incremental change, such as starting by fixing Medicare and Medicaid, and then moving to bring more and better coverage to more people.
He supports solutions such as reducing community reliance on emergency rooms for health care; promoting better overall fitness, wellness and nutrition, along with reducing obesity; and encouraging medical research into treatments and cures for conditions.
He said he recognizes Congress is not very popular right now with the American people, but he encouraged people to keep sharing what they think with elected officials.
"I still think Congress listens to people," he said. "It may take a while for that voice to get heard, and people can get discouraged."
Moran said his goal is to keep Kansas strong for the future.
"How do we make sure there's a future for our kids to raise their families?" he said.