FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- While Congress is on recess, U.S. Senator Tom Cotton spent time with Southside High School students in Fort Smith.
“I hope someday to be a politician, so for me to listen to him was very inspiring,” senior Kate Truitt said after his speech.
While topics like terrorism, wage levels, national debt and Apple's feud with the FBI were discussed, the politician also took time to talk about how he got from his hometown in Arkansas to the nation's capital.
“I try to share a little bit about my life, how I went from Dardanelle to the Army and now to the Senate,” Cotton said.
His message is already sticking with Truitt.
“Write your plan in pencil, don't write it in pen,” she recalled from his speech. “That way, when your plan does change you don't freak out and understand that it just might be God's plan for you."
The senator was impressed with the questions he was asked by the teenagers.
“Sometimes you get better questions from students than you get from adults,” he said.
And since there wasn't time for every student to ask a question, many left the auditorium with something on their mind.
“I would have asked him about a couple of different things, mostly about immigration and what he thought about the Syrians coming in or the Hispanics coming in,” Truitt said. “And I also would have liked to [ask] what he thought about the campaign right now."
“He talked a lot about the issues with our national debt, but he never told us how he would have fixed those issues. So I would have asked him that,” senior Armonde Maurras said.
Seventeen-year-old Patrick Dougherty said he's just excited to have exposure to a politician at his age.
“Really our political foundations are based upon what our parents think, and what the adults around us think. So I think it was very good for high school students to get exposure to him and for him to kind of fill us in on what he thinks, and what's happening around us, so we can start to form our own opinions,” Dougherty said.
About 300 juniors and seniors attended the speech.