Paul Ryan's Colorado tour hits Grand Junction

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan made a stop in Grand Junction on Monday, speaking to a packed house at CMU’s Brownson Arena.

With the election just about two weeks away, the Romney/ Ryan campaign is hitting the swing state of Colorado hard. Monday, Paul Ryan started in Pueblo and moved to Durango before hitting Grand Junction around 5:30 p.m.

For Ryan, the speech was a chance to bring the election and the issues facing voters right here to the Western Slope, and even though the speech was short, lasting only about 20 minutes, he made sure Grand Junction voters know their ballots matter.

"I pray to God because my grandchildren, your grandchildren, we'll be living in a different world unless we change things and change things now," Vietnam vet Donald Jenkins said after the speech.

After touching on Romney's five-point plan, Ryan brought the conversation directly to the Western Slope, talking about energy and job creation that he says would come with cutting regulation on federal lands.

"We need the Keystone Pipeline. We need to start drilling here. We don't need to fund Brazil oil. We need to drill here; we need to mine coal here; we need to produce natural gas here," coal miner Jim Whitfield said.

Local Republican representatives are looking to use Ryan’s words as a learning experience.

"It is an opportunity to give to constituents information that maybe is not out in the public sector as much," District 7 Senator Steve King said.

Another big topic from Ryan's speech was the federal deficit, as he told the crowd the country needs to stop spending, and said the Romney/ Ryan campaign has a plan to balance the budget.

Paul Ryan's tour of Colorado continues Tuesday, when he'll be joined by Mitt Romney at the Red Rocks Amphitheater in Denver.

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