Sen. Tom Cotton Likes ‘Wide-open’ GOP Presidential Field

May 31, 2015

Sen. Tom Cotton on this week's edition of Talk Business & Politics.
Credit Talk Business & Politics

Arkansas’ junior senator, Tom Cotton, likes the crowded GOP field of potential Presidential candidates and says he’s a long way from making a decision on who he will support.

Sen. Cotton, R-Ark., was a guest on this week’s edition of Talk Business & Politics with Roby Brock, which airs Monday evening at 6:06 p.m. on KUAR.

“I don’t think there is a frontrunner,” said Cotton. “I think it’s a wide-open competition and I think that’s healthy. As a conservative, I believe competition is a good thing. Competition in the marketplace breeds better products at better prices for consumers. I think competition in the political marketplace leads to better ideas and better leaders.”

Cotton, who many national pundits believe will be in the conversation as a potential VP choice for the eventual Republican nominee, said he will watch and assess the vision that each candidate articulates during the 2016 election cycle.

“I don’t anticipate supporting any candidate for the time being, and I look forward as a Republican myself watching the candidates perform, telling us where they want to take the country, and ultimately making a choice with the rest of Arkansas next year during our primary,” he said.

Cotton also weighed in on the Lockheed Martin superproject that could locate in East Camden’s industrial park if the defense contractor wins the Department of Defense bid. State lawmakers overwhelmingly passed a $87 million bond issue this past week as part of Lockheed’s proposal.

Sen. Cotton, who often espouses free market principles and limited government influence in commerce, said he has no problem with the state bond package as it will have a “net positive” for state revenue.

“More importantly, what I’m focused on is making sure we get the best vehicle for our troops, the best value for federal taxpayers, and hopefully good jobs in South Arkansas,” Cotton said.

He chairs the Air Land Power subcommittee on Armed Forces and, as a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, Cotton said the JLTV will be an asset to troops.

“As someone who has ridden in a Humvee in combat, I can tell you that soldiers and Marines need a new light tactical vehicle that was designed for combat,” he said. “The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) will be more survivable, it will be more mobile and it will be more reliable for our soldiers and Marines.”

Cotton also shared comments on several other topics, including:

  • Highway funding – He’s opposed to raising the gas tax and wants to see less spending on light rail, urban mass transit, and landscaping. “The highway trust fund should be spent on highways,” he said.
  • EPA’s Waters of the U.S. regulations – He anticipates litigation and legislation to address the new rules and delay their implementation.
  • The memorial service for Johnson Co. Deputy Sheriff Sonny Smith.

You can watch his full interview below.