Marshall Countians are not going to lose their Second Amendment rights.

Both Sen. Lamar Alexander and Rep. Scott DesJarlais promised this when they spoke at the Republican's Presidents' Day dinner Friday.

Alexander said gun control would be debated in the Senate for the next three weeks.

"I'm going to vote no," he said about the bill on background checks coming up this week. Alexander said he did vote yes on whether to debate gun control

"I'm always willing to debate Second Amendment rights," Alexander said. "I've had an A rating from the NRA for 10 years, and I intend to keep it that way."

Later in the program, DesJarlais said, "If it (a gun control bill) passes the Senate, we will kill it in the house. We will protect your Second Amendment rights."

It was a very special night for Marshall County Republicans, who filled the event room at the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders' and Exhibitors' headquarters on North Elllington Parkway. Melody Spence of A Victorian Melody provided beautiful flower arrangements on all the tables, and Chris and Angie Richter of Russell's Catering served a delicious meal.

Both Alexander and DesJarlais complemented Marshall County for the growth of its Republican Party.

"I feel privileged to have my job, and I thank you for it," said Alexander. "I get up every morning hoping I'll be able to do a little something" good for the people who elected me.

He spoke about the three things the Republicans are trying to get done in the Senate: fix the debt, move decisions out of Washington, and lift taxes and restrictions off the free enterprise system.

Tennessee has zero road debt Alexander pointed out.

"We need to export some of that commonsense to Washington," he exclaimed.

An issue close to his heart is the Freedom to Fish campaign, and this relates to the goal of moving decisions out of the capital.

The Army Corps of Engineers wants to prohibit all fishing below dams, even though it's only dangerous about 20 percent of the time, when water is being released.

"The government doesn't have the responsibility to protect you," Alexander said. "This is an example of a decision made in a remote place that makes not sense.

"Nine hundred thousand people bought fishing licenses," he continued. "They care about this issue."

The free enterprise system is being affected by President Obama's healthcare law. Individual insurance premiums will go up, Alexander said, and then employers' costs will go up, and their response will be to reduce the number of jobs.

"You didn't ask for this healthcare law," said DesJarlais when it was his turn to speak. "It's not really going to help anybody. It's a disaster waiting to happen.

"Entitlements, welfare and healthcare are driving the deficit," he said.

"This is an impressive room full of Republicans," said DesJarlais. "The turn out has been great in a lot of places. It's not Tennessee's fault what happened in the last election."

Also speaking was State Senator Jim Tracy.

"We're blessed to have Senator Alexander here with us tonight," he said. "He was a governor, so he really understands the state."

Tracy also complemented Marshall County's own Billy Spivey, now serving his first term as a state representative.

"Spivey's doing an outstanding job," Tracy said. "He's smart, he pays attention, and he understands the issues.

"It's great to be in Tennessee," Tracy continued. "It has one of the lowest state debts, it's one of the No. 1 business-friendly states, and it's No. 3 in roads, without road debt. The state is being run very well. It's the taxpayers' money, and we're trying to be good stewards of it."

Tracy said Republicans have made the state better, and are continuing to do so. They are eliminating the death tax, cutting the Hall income tax little by little, and cutting the sales tax on groceries. Republicans have also passed a workers compensation bill that will bring down insurance premiums, and passed a tort reform bill that will lead to lower liability insurance premiums.

"What an honor it is to serve the people of this district," said Spivey. "They are my friends and my confidantes."

"Folks, we're on the map," he concluded. "We've got a U.S. Senator and a U.S. Representative here with us. They're here because you're the leaders. When the people lead, the leaders follow."

"We're proud of them," concluded Master of Ceremonies Wayne Coomes. "They do a good job."

He reminded attendees of the Lewisburg city election next month.

"All elections have consequences. It matters who serves," Coomes said, urging people to get involved with the candidates and the issues. He cautioned people to drive safely on the way home, stating, "We want each one of you to come back and be with us next year."