McCaskill in St. Joseph to Talk with City Leaders

McCaskill in St. Joseph to Talk with City Leaders

Healthcare, military spending among many of the topics covered at roundtable.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) During Senator Clair McCaskill's trip to St. Joseph Friday, the senator admitted Washington D.C. is broken.

"There's frustration over Congress not being able to reach compromise and work together," she said. "They keep saying: 'What's wrong with you guys?' I get that. It's frustrating to be there."

McCaskill dropped by the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce to speak to local leaders and get feedback. Not everything she heard was bad.

"As I've moved around the state, people are more optimistic now than they were several years ago," McCaskill said. "Clearly we're doing better."

McCaskill warned that there are more problems on the horizon if republicans and democrats don't agree on a budget, especially if it comes to another sequester.

"The next one will be harder and the one after that will be even harder," said McCaskill. "It doesn't separate the wheat from the chaff. It doesn't decide if this is a smart use of taxpayer money or if this is a stupid use of taxpayer money."

Later in the day, the senator appeared at the yearly Democratic Club barbecue. Local democrats agreed a sequester would hurt us locally.

"A sequester would not be good for anyone in the country," said Buchanan County Public Administrator Bill McMurray. "We have a lot to lose in this area if the game playing in Washington doesn't stop, starting with our tremendous air guard base and all they do for our economy.

"They live here and they are citizen-soldiers," said St. Joseph City Councilman Byron Myers. "They actually have an investment in this community that you don't see in the normal military circumstance."

McCaskill understands St. Joseph would be especially hit hard by a sequester.

"That's why our cuts need to be strategic and not like the sequestration that cuts everything across the board without rhyme or reason as to whether or not it's worth taxpayer money," she said.

In addition to military spending, McCaskill says she's concerned with future expansion of Medicaid.

She says if Missouri chooses not to participate, it will lose out on millions of dollars of reimbursements that will instead go to other states.
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