Barrasso visits rotary club


TORRINGTON – The Torrington Rotary Club met with US Senator John Barrasso during its regular meeting on Monday. 

Barrasso usually starts his year with a visit at the rotary club, but Monday marked the first time he had been since the beginning of the pandemic. Barrasso updated members on a variety of topics at the national level including COVID relief, energy and Afghanistan. 

Barrasso talked about the how rural hospitals were affected by the pandemic and some of the bills passed to help Americans during the uncertain times. 

“What we needed to do from a Washington standpoint was move the Paycheck Protection Program to make sure that people wouldn’t find themselves forced out of work and then forced out of paychecks,” Barrasso said. 

States also received $1.2 billion to carry on through COVID. 

Since the last time the senator met with the rotary club, there has been a transition in the White House. Barrasso addressed some of the issues President Joe Biden has been working on including his move toward green energy. 

Afghanistan was another important issue for the people of Wyoming with the loss of Rylee McCollum during an attack in Kabul. Barrasso talked about how McCollum was a prominent high school wrestler in the state and was eager to join the marines when he turned 18. 

“We all lost a son that day,” Barrasso said. 

 Along with his stop at the rotary club, Barrasso also met with some of the local schools which he said are doing a great job providing an education for the youth in the community. 

“Per capita there are more board-certified teachers in the schools here than in any other community in Wyoming,” Barrasso said. 

With Monday also being Martin Luther King Jr Day, Barrasso related it to Wyoming’s nickname of the Equality State and how everyone has an equal chance based on hard work. 

Barrasso also answered questions on energy in the state. 

“We need all the energy,” Barrasso said. “We need oil, gas, coal, we need uranium.” 

Barrasso talked about people who he calls “climate alarmists” such as Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and believes they can help the climate without hurting the economy. Barrasso also calls Biden’s Build Back Better Bill the “Reckless Tax and Spending Bill.” 

According to Barrasso, the United States should use its energy resources as an advantage. 

“Energy is called the master resource for a reason. It powers our country, it powers our military, it powers our economy and we are blessed with so much of it we should be, as a nation, energy dominant,” Barrasso said. 

Barrasso was also asked about presidential candidates for the 2024 election. While Barrasso said there are at least 16 candidates for the presidential election, his focus is on the midterm in 2022. 

“You have a White House, a senate and a house all of the same party and they want to take a freight train in the wrong direction,” Barrasso said. “And I’m trying to break up the freight train and run it off the track.”

Barrasso said he loves meeting with the Torrington Rotary Club and loves being in Wyoming. 

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