Senator Dan Coats (R-IN) has said farewell to his colleagues on Capitol Hill. He thanked Hoosiers for his opportunities to serve and called on legislators to tackle "two transcendent issues that jeopardize America’s continued existence as the world’s leading nation." This year marks the end of Coats’ second stint in the Senate.
The first issue is the national debt, which now exceeds $19.5 trillion. "From a practical standpoint, our country simply can’t keep borrowing money we don’t have," he said. "One day, if not addressed, this debt bomb will explode and have a devastating effect on our country’s economy and on our children’s future." He also said programs like Social Security and Medicare are creeping "ever closer" to insolvency.
He also talked about a second issue he called "the terrorist bomb," or threats posed by a possible future acts involving weapons of mass destruction. He said the nation must also adapt to new threats such as cyber attacks. "These challenges require all those who govern to rise above political consequences to make the hard decisions needed to make our country stronger and more secure for future generations."
Coats, a veteran, also served as U.S. Ambassador to Germany, a Congressman and a staffer for Dan Quayle, who later became vice president under George H.W. Bush.
See Coats’ speech on the floor of the Senate here: