As Sen. Tom Coburn started his address to the crowd at Francis Tuttle Technology Center in Oklahoma City, he made two things crystal clear: People would not like his answers, but things will get better.
Before Coburn, R-Okla., opened Wednesday's town hall meeting to questions from the audience, he addressed the crowd by outlining how bad the national debt has become and how future generations will be affected if action is not taken.
"The problems in front of us are big," said Coburn, who is running for re-election in November. "You may get depressed with some of the answers that I give today, but I want you to remember one thing: The American spirit is alive and well, and it's represented in you and not by the people in Congress "¦ There is not one problem in Congress that we can't solve with clear vision, common sense and allegiance and loyalty the Constitution."
Coburn fielded questions about a variety of topics, including the national debt and the removal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan. But the topics of immigration and health care were to be the biggest issues of the day.
The senator said keeping Oklahoma jobs with Oklahomans is of the utmost importance to him, but he thinks the Obama administration has a different agenda.
"Countries are not secure if they don't secure their borders," Coburn said. "There should not be one Oklahoman that does not have a job because an illegal alien has taken it from them.
"It is of the utmost importance that we secure our borders, and this president does not want it to happen because he wants to raise a contingency to make sure they are in the majority forever with illegal votes."
COBURN: 'OBAMACARE' WORSE THAN HE PREDICTED
Coburn, who released a 100-day report on so-called "Obamacare" on his website Wednesday, acknowledged that health care as a whole needed to be changed. However, he said this reform was shoved down citizens' throats before they could figure out what was happening.
"What I predicted would happen, it's actually worse than what I predicted what would happen," Coburn said. "Health care costs are going to go up 13 percent this year and access is going to go down and access for Medicare patients is going to go down. The worst place to get your care is the ER. What should have been done to fix health care is fix the system that caused incentives to go up."
Despite the concerns of most of the people at the meeting, Coburn said he is encouraged for the future because now people are alert to what is happening and it should equal a larger voter turnout come November.
"The American people are awake, and it's not anger; it's fear," Coburn said. "Adam Kemp | photo/Adam Kemp