A Clear Vision for Texas

 I will steadfastly fight for limited government and freedom under the rule of law:

Issues Facing Texas

Reduce government spending. Just like we must do at home with our personal business, goverment must live within its means, set spending priorities, cut spending where necessary, institute zero-based budgeting and eliminate waste. Contraction in government’s size and scope is needed and will yield more freedom, responsibility and prosperity. We must also reduce government dependence on property taxes and debt, and eliminate unecessary taxation such as the business franchise tax (gross margins tax), which is complicated, onerous and counterproductive.

Secure the border. We must support law-abiding immigrants who will provide for themselves. I favor efforts to reform the naturalization process that facilitates the acceptance of law-abiding applicants. I also support measures to increase and facilitate the issuance of visas to law-abiding temporary workers. At the same time, we should uphold and enforce the laws of this country. Non-emergency state institutions should be prohibited from providing services to illegal immigrants and private employers should be fined for knowingly and intentionally hiring workers without valid papers. Because the federal government has been derelict in the enforcement of its immigration laws, Texas should enact and enforce such state laws as will facilitate, within its powers, the enforcement of existing statutes.

Enforce the 10th Amendment. The 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” I will defend State sovereignty and oppose all unfunded mandates and unconstitutional encroachments of the federal government (such as Obamacare, Cap-and-Tax, Gun Control, etc.) upon Texans and the State of Texas. Respect for State sovereignty is essential to Texas and the union of all the States according to Article 1, Section 1 of the Texas Constitution which is entitled “FREEDOM AND SOVEREIGNTY OF STATE.” It reads: “Texas is a free and independent State, subject only to the Constitution of the United States, and the maintenance of our free institutions and the perpetuity of the Union depend upon the preservation of the right of local self-government, unimpaired to all the States.”

Protect human life. All human life is precious, being made in the image of God. Lives of the innocent and defenseless — whether unborn, infant, handicapped or elderly — especially deserve protection. I am opposed to abortion, harvesting of embryonic stem cells and euthanasia. And I will be a staunch defender of traditional East Texas family values.

Protect individual liberty. The best way to preserve personal liberty is to limit civil government to administering justice and protecting life, liberty, and property. The best path to prosperity is to preserve individual liberty and responsibility. Freedom, not force — voluntary actions and association, not government coercion — will unite people and lead to prosperity. People should be free to speak, assemble, and practice their religious convictions peaceably according to their conscience and reason. This liberty is recognized not only by the federal Bill of Rights, but also the Texas Bill of Rights. I am opposed to coercive religious service or support. I believe moral rectitude is the most determinative factor on whether a nation, a state, or a community prospers;[1] however, this cannot be forced upon individuals. It comes from within — from a transformed heart and faith.[2]

Protect private property. Private property must be protected from eminent domain abuse. Prior to the initiation of condemnation proceedings, a good faith offer based on fair market value must be provided. Furthermore, if condemnation occurs, all the factors that a willing seller and a willing buyer would consider should be considered in arriving at just compensation for condemned property, including diminishment in value to the remainder of the property caused by the taking.

Contend for the individual right to keep and bear arms. Individual ownership and competence in the use of firearms are essential for maintaining freedom. I support the right to make, keep, carry and prudently use firearms for self-defense, provisioning and sport. I will support legislation that declares that firearms, firearm accessories, and ammunition made and sold in Texas are not subject to federal regulation. Furthermore, all unconstitutional actions by the federal government to encroach upon the right to self-defense should be resisted by the State of Texas.[3] I am a life member of the NRA, Gun Owners of America, and the Texas State Rifle Association.[4]

Protect the freedom to travel. The freedom to travel is essential to free and prosperous society. Civil government should protect this liberty and, where necessary, state and local governments should build and maintain infrastructure to promote and preserve this freedom. Funding for transportation should be handled with transparency, accountability and efficiency. Over $1 billion has been diverted from the State Highway Fund 006 over the last three bienniums. Taxes collected for transportation should be used for transportation. Furthermore, transportation projects should be prioritized based on measurable results such as relieving congestion. Like many Texans, I disapproved of the recently proposed Trans-Texas Corridor and argued against it in public forums. I oppose any efforts to convert any currently public roads into private or toll roads. I also oppose raising the gas tax. Bond-funded toll roads may be a beneficial way of funding new roads, provided that the contracts for these roads be closely scrutinized and that toll rates are not set higher than is required to repay the debt induced by building the road.

Protect a free market development of resources. I believe energy solutions, innovation and efficiency are best realized in a free market. Texas has rich resources — both traditional and alternative — which should be fully explored, utilized and wisely conserved.

Protect health care freedom, responsibility and privacy. Caring for one’s own bodily health is an unalienable right and responsibility. The liberty and privacy of individual health care decisions should be protected by the State of Texas. I believe the best health care will not be provided or determined by bureaucrats or politically favored corporations, but by a free market which engenders innovation and personal responsibility. I believe health insurance is generally a good thing; it is a form of saving and preparing for future needs. However, I believe it is unconstitutional for the federal government to fine individuals, contractors or businesses for not having health insurance or to tax us for health care. Based on the protections provided to the State of Texas and its people in the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, where possible I will work with the Governor, Attorney General, fellow legislators and county sheriffs to oppose the federal government’s unconstitutional invasion of our personal health, freedom and privacy.

 

1.“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” — Proverbs 14:34. 2. Texas Constitution Article 1, Section 6. “FREEDOM OF WORSHIP. All men have a natural and indefeasible right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own consciences. No man shall be compelled to attend, erect or support any place of worship, or to maintain any ministry against his consent. No human authority ought, in any case whatever, to control or interfere with the rights of conscience in matters of religion, and no preference shall ever be given by law to any religious society or mode of worship. But it shall be the duty of the Legislature to pass such laws as may be necessary to protect equally every religious denomination in the peaceable enjoyment of its own mode of public worship.” Section 7. “APPROPRIATIONS FOR SECTARIAN PURPOSES. No money shall be appropriated, or drawn from the Treasury for the benefit of any sect, or religious society, theological or religious seminary; nor shall property belonging to the State be appropriated for any such purposes.” 3. Similar legislation is now law in Montana, Tennessee, Arizona and four other states.  4. I am grateful for the honor of an “A” rating given by both the National Rifle Association and the Texas State Rifle Association.