U.S. Sen. Roger Marshall holds local town hall meeting

Meghan Flynn
Garden City Telegram
U.S. Sen. Roger Marshall answers an audience question at a town hall meeting Saturday at St. Catherine Hospital.

U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, R-Kansas, held a town hall meeting Saturday at St. Catherine Hospital in Garden City. 

It was namely a question and answer session, with Marshall responding to audience queries. 

One question asked to Marshall was when Congress will move forward normalizing DACA recipients. 

Marshall said he doesn't see that happening anytime soon, it's hard to get people to talk about that issue as it's not an easy fix. 

"When I went to Congress four years ago, I worked really hard for a DACA solution ... I think we had a good solution in the bill that I worked on, it wasn't perfect, but it was the best that I could get, but I don't see it in the near future," he said. "I certainly am committed to fixing a very broken immigration system, I believe in legal immigration. I think until we can secure the border it's hard to fix any immigration issue."

Another question asked if there was a way to get more staff at USCIS and Homeland Security to work on processing, to help increase the speed so that people have more of an incentive to come and become a U.S. citizen legally. 

Marshall said he has tried and will continue to try, however it's frustrating, especially with federal government employees still work from home, "their productivity has fallen off the cliff, it's horrible. There's no excuse for them being at home right now."

It's not a unique issue, Marshall said. The slowness of the department was a problem before he got involved in politics and has been a priority of his since. 

He said part of the problem is push back from the federal government, with them saying they can't get people to move to western Kansas. 

"How many of us have moved because of a job?" he said. "That's what you have to do sometimes, especially if you want a promotion, is to go where your job is. Uprooting our families, but the federal government seems to be (imbued) to that."

Marshall was also asked about how to weed out the bad officers in law enforcement, that it's a problem.

"One of the problems that other states have is you have a bad officer in another county and they come apply here somewhere in Kansas," he said. "I'm not allowed to, but the people hiring that person can call that other sheriff's office or the other police office and ask for their personnel record and see, because a lot of those bad apples, the bad apples in health care, you'll see that they kind of jump from city to city as well, they aren't able to keep a job. But I think we're trying to do it, and again it's not perfect, but I expect us to police ourselves in so many ways and I think Kansas does a good job."

It's important to elect good people on school boards, city commissions, county commissions and as administrator's and superintendents, Marshall said, they're keys to making sure problems are taken care of from the bottom up. 

"You would think if there's a problem on the police force, a problem in the sheriff's officers, those commissioners, those commissioners should be holding someone's feet to the fire," he said. "That's what we hire them to do." 

Another question was asked about the possibility of the Supreme Court being expanded. Marshall said he doesn't see that happening, that the only way it would happen is if there is not filibuster, which makes it so that it takes 60 votes in the Senate to pass most legislation.

"The way I look at that is it makes Democrats and Republicans work together for long-term solutions, keeping the laws of the land from going up and down," he said. "I think as long as we have the filibuster that's not going to happen. You're not going to get 60 senators to vote in favor of that."