BIG LAKE (WJON News) - Minnesota Congressman  Tom Emmer was in Big Lake Monday night for a town-hall listening session.

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Constituents from throughout the area spent more than an hour peppering Emmer with questions. On more than one occasion, federal spending was questioned. Emmer agreed that Congress should be focused on reigning in spending, and explained the results of a non-partisan report given to lawmakers last spring.

He told all of us, Republicans and Democrats alike, that the debt service on US debt for the last 80 years was roughly $9 trillion. If we don't correct course, right now, the debt service in the next 10 years is going to be in excess of $10 trillion dollars. And by 2032, you're going to be borrowing just to stay afloat. So this has been serious.

A question was asked about crime and the police, especially in areas like Minneapolis. Emmer responded by identifying what he sees as the primary problem.

Congressman Tom Emmer listens to a question in a town hall meeting in Big Lake. Photo - Jeff McMahon, WJON.
Congressman Tom Emmer listens to a question in a town hall meeting in Big Lake. Photo - Jeff McMahon, WJON.
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I am happy to help in any way I can, but Minneapolis is going to have to figure out its own business. You can't keep attacking the people that are charged with enforcing the law, and you can't have prosecutors who decide that they're not going to enforce laws. This whole civil society is based on honoring the rule of law. If you don't like it, then you get elected to a state legislature or somewhere else and you move to change the laws that you disagree with. It's the way we maintain order, and unfortunately, we haven't been doing it.

Some questions revolved around former president Donald Trump, the incident at the Capitol on January 6th, and the votes to certify the election. Emmer says he stands behind his votes.

The way I was raised to understand the Constitution is we don't read things into it. That is not my constitutional right to do that.

Emmer was accompanied by several of his Washington, D.C. staffers, so constituents with more specific or detailed questions could connect with someone to research the answer.

Photo: Jeff McMahon - WJON
Photo: Jeff McMahon - WJON
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