Rokita holds town hall in Lebanon - Purdue Exponent: City & State

Rokita holds town hall in Lebanon

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Posted: Monday, August 26, 2013 10:00 am

U.S. Rep. Todd Rokita, R-District 4, said Friday there should be more transparency for students about the outcomes for majors in college and the federal government should not rate colleges.

Rokita held a town hall meeting Friday night in Lebanon, Ind., one of many town halls during the August recess, to answer questions from constituents. The meeting held at Farmer’s Bank had around 50 people in attendance.

Rokita said in an interview after the town hall that he’s concerned that students don’t have enough information about what to major in when they get to college. He said that he had not watched President Barack Obama’s speech on college affordability and a rating system due to travel, but that he did not like Obama’s idea to rate schools.

“What I don’t like about the president’s idea would be that government gets to decide what that major is based on what (the schools) publish,” Rokita said. “There is a rating system out there already ... so I don’t think that’s necessary.”

Rokita has voted against funding Pell Grants and has said he does not believe students should trump children or grandchildren’s financial futures.

Constituents at the town hall were concerned with Indiana’s economy, education and privacy issues related to the National Security Agency. Rokita said the top three issues he had been asked about most were immigration, the Affordable Care Act and unfair practices in Congress, essentially distrust of elected officials.

One resident asked Rokita about supporting federal subsidies for energy sources like biofuel, wind and solar. Rokita replied that the private market should determine what energies receive funding, but that he had to think of “God’s green Earth.”

After the event, Rokita said he did not believe that climate change is caused by man.

“I think it’s arrogant that we think as people that we can somehow change the climate of the whole earth when science is telling us that there’s a cycle to all this,” he said. “And that cycle was occurring before the industrial revolution and I suspect will occur way into the future.”

However, a report to be released next month by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will say that scientists are 95 percent certain climate change is caused by humans.

He will be in Delphi at 12:30 p.m. Monday at Stone House Restaurant & Bakery and Crawfordsville at 3 p.m. Wednesday at the Crawfordsville Public Library.

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