Senator Rounds hears from locals on hot topics

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Senator Mike Rounds heard from locals Friday on hot topics making headlines out of Washington, D.C.

People were passionate at Senator Mike Rounds' "Coffee and Conversation" at Western Dakota Technical Institute.
Rounds says it gave people the opportunity to hear each other talk and understand the challenges Congress has when trying to find a common ground.

Rounds says, "And even in a place like South Dakota and a place like Rapid City, in which you would think we're all kind of thinking along the same lines, you find differences of opinion, put that into perspective when we're in the United States Senate with people from all over the United States with different points of view, they start to then see a little bit of how hard it is to find consensus in the Senate as well."

Many Republican town hall type meetings across the country have been quite confrontational, with people angry over President Trump's actions and hot topics like healthcare.

Rounds says, "I thought today folks were very well, I mean, for the most part, they were very well behaved. They respected one another, they most certainly let people know when they agreed with them and when they disagreed with them, but the vast majority of the folks here recognized that it was a public discussion."

With several questions surrounding healthcare, Rounds says what's driving them in the Senate to get to working on healthcare is the major increases in premiums under Obamacare this coming year.
He says more people will become uninsured if something isn't done to fix the mess.

Rounds says, "In South Dakota, they're telling us that we could see increases from Obamacare, somewhere in the neighborhood of 40% and for folks that are out there that use Obamacare, they can't afford that. Some cases, we've got people right now that are paying more for healthcare than what they are on their mortgage on their house, so our concern is that we can't slip and let that go on."

Rounds says he would like a few things to be included in the provisions of the new plan, including allowing people to stay on their parent's policy until they're 26 years old as well as protecting people with pre-existing conditions as long as they keep their insurance in force.