Brady, TX - Senate-hopeful Beto O'Rourke made Brady one of his campaign stops on Friday and dozens of residents took advantage of the opportunity to meet the Texas representative and hear his message.
O'Rourke is on the campaign trail as a challenger to U.S. Senator Ted Cruz for his seat on the senate.
One of the topics O'Rourke spoke at length about was the state's healthcare system.
He shared a story of a San Angelo man who approached him to tell him about a relative that committed suicide because the medical bills he was facing were too daunting.
O'Rourke said he heard a similar story from a resident in Amarillo during a town hall meeting and offered the next statement as a response.
"We're losing people to diseases of despair, whether it's opoid addiction or suicide or alcoholism," O'Rourke says. "Those people are missing the opportunity to contribute to their full potential. If that person could have afforded that surgery imagine what they could have done for their family or their community."
O'Rourke added another statement, saying "When your county jail is the largest healthcare provider in your state, you know you have a problem."
The cost of education was one of several other concerns residents brought to O'Rourke's attention during a Q&A session.
"What will you do to work on strengthening agriculture in the area," asked a fellow Texan of O'Rourke.
O'Rourke responded at length about working on legislative items such as the farm bill and providing focus to concerns on a unified front--whether democrat or republican.
He also talked about being against any potential trade war which may be damaging to the state's economy.
"If we follow the President's lead in these trade wars he's beginning, we will close down markets for Texas cattle ranchers and farmers. And we will lose jobs and economic growth in communities like this one [Brady]," he says.
Another item O'Rourke says would be damaging to the Texas economy is the construction of a border wall.
He also added that Texas should be the blueprint for how any legislation regarding immigration is created.
"Not just to protect Dreamers from deportation, but to insure all of those who are working in the shadows right now can come into the light and use their full potential to contribute to the country's success."
O'Rourke's campaign trail will continue with several other stops across Texas in the next few weeks.
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