Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper yesterday held his first town hall since being sworn in as U.S. Senator earlier this year. The town hall was held virtually due to COVID-19 safety concerns and more than 1,000 Coloradans tuned in online or by phone.
Hickenlooper addressed a wide variety of topics posed by participants including the recently-passed American Rescue Plan, voting rights, climate change, infrastructure, gun safety, and the ongoing effort to keep Space Command in Colorado Springs.
Full video of the event is available HERE.
On what the American Rescue Plan is doing for Colorado small businesses:
Hickenlooper: “The American Rescue Plan takes the PPP funding that was already in place and expanded it dramatically, there is still $60 billion to be spent nationwide. There were [also] funds specifically allocated for shuttered venues and restaurants largely because those businesses had been so hard hit and received almost no help previously.”
On the need to address climate change:
Hickenlooper: “Climate change is the existential threat of our time. Most experts think we have 10 , 11 years maybe 12 years on the outside to start making a dramatic difference in how we deal with emissions…We have to recognize there are a lot of things we need to do at once. We need to go electric…we’re going to ultimately have to look at everything and look at carbon capture.”
On his support for H.R. 1/S. 1 and the need to protect voting rights:
Hickenlooper: “Both [bills] are about making sure we have as many ways to facilitate people registering and voting as possible. And we are really focused on maintaining election security. I think we’ve done that but we want more people to register and more people to vote. We also address dark money in politics and the bills require a level of transparency we haven’t seen before…I am a supporter and I look forward to getting it passed.”
On keeping Space Command HQ in Colorado Springs:
Hickenlooper: “By every account I’ve heard, Donald Trump had his finger on the scale…I want to see the framework, I was told when I first got elected we would see the scores and that hasn’t happened yet…we will have a chance in the next two years to go over the process and make sure it was done fairly.”
On the need to invest in American infrastructure:
Hickenlooper: “It’s bridges and roads, it’s going to be broadband, it’s going to be public health facilities. There are so many different things that all are necessary for our infrastructure.
“ I think in almost every case I’ve been looking at it as those things that are necessary and on which we can build a strong, equitable economy. In other words, make sure we address the inequity we saw all too clearly during the pandemic.”