Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

U.S. House, District 31

Mary Jennings "MJ" Hegar is an author, former Air Force maintenance office and Air Guard pilot. She served three tours of duty in Afghanistan. She received the Purple Heart for injuries sustained when the medivac helicopter she was piloting was shot down. Her list of Congressional priorities includes affordable health care, a higher minimum wage, freedom for and from religion, and using diplomacy to promote peace around the world. Christine Eady Mann is a family physician. She's served on the Williamson County American Heart Association Board of Directors and with CASA of Travis County as a volunteer advocate in court on behalf of abused and neglected children. Her list of Congressional priorities includes universal health insurance coverage, universal background checks on all gun purchases and incentives for renewable energy industries in Central Texas. The winner of the runoff will face Republican incumbent John Carter in November. Congressional District 31 includes all of Williamson County and most of Bell County.

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  • John Carter
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Mary Jennings 'MJ' Hegar
    (Dem)

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Biographical Information

What do you consider the most critical issue Texas will face over the next five years? If elected, how would you approach this issue?

School finance in Texas has generated lots of talk but little legislation in recent years. What is your philosophy on the future of public school funding?

Do you believe America has a problem with gun violence? If so, how do you plan tackle it?

Congress and the President want to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and have taken steps to dismantle it. What role should the government have when it comes to health insurance?

Texas adds about a thousand people a day. This rapid growth has caused several problems. What are the top three issues the government should address because of this growth?

As a Texan, what do you believe is missing from the conversation about immigration and border security? How would your beliefs influence your approach to those policies?

Describe a unique experience from your childhood that shaped who you are today.

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Age 42
Education BA, University of Texas at Austin EMBA, University of Texas
Campaign Phone (512) 566-9609
Website MJforTexas.com
Facebook www.facebook.com/MJforTexas/
Twitter twitter.com/mjhegar
website MJforTexas.com
Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zi6v4CYNSIQ
I believe that one of the greatest threats to our democracy is the influence of powerful special interest groups on the political process. We need to restore our democracy and give voters the choice of who represents them instead of letting politicians pick their voters. We need to increase voter engagement throughout the state so that our representatives are more reflective of the values of all Texans. I am committed to fixing the rigged political system that cares more about billionaires and big corporations than everyday citizens. I will fight to get big money out of politics and return power to hardworking Texans.
As a mother of two young boys, I understand the importance of a quality education. I went to public schools in my district, and then went on to get a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin. As the first person in my family to graduate from college, I know that without my quality public education I would not have been able to serve my country as effectively throughout my life. I know that strong public schools are an investment in our nation’s future, and I am committed to being an advocate for Texas public schools and teachers. I also know that crippling student loan debt is a deterrent to innovation and small business creation and that we need to invest in all kinds of higher education, from vocational training to degree programs.
As a combat veteran, I have a deep understanding and respect for the Second Amendment and know that responsible gun owners are the first to support common sense gun safety legislation. Like the vast majority of my neighbors, I support universal background checks. We need to do more to prevent domestic violence abusers from owning firearms. I believe that the gun violence epidemic is the biggest threat to the Second Amendment and will support legislation that respects the right of responsible gun owners while working to reduce the number of gun deaths in America.
As a soldier wounded in battle, and mother of two, I understand the importance of quality medical care and know first hand the struggles that so many families go through to afford quality healthcare. I also worked for a local hospital network in central Texas and believe all Americans deserve access to quality affordable care. In Congress, I will fight to make healthcare more affordable for Texans by eliminating waste, protecting people with pre-existing conditions, lowering the cost of prescription drugs, and fixing the problems in the system without letting insurance companies call the shots.
As your representative, I will address the impact of Texas’s rapid growth by increasing broadband access and investing in infrastructure, removing barriers to small business creation, and ensuring everyone has access to quality, affordable healthcare.
My first priority is always secure borders and our national security. I believe the best way to do this is through information security and adequately funded and executed policies, rather than physical barriers. I support comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship, and am a supporter of the DACA program, particularly for those who have served in our military.
My mother survived domestic violence and brought my sister and I to Texas, overcoming obstacles and economic hardship to build us a better life. My mother worked three jobs, doing everything she could to ensure that we had access to a quality education. As a first generation college student, education was my ticket out of a cycle of poverty. This experience taught me the importance of perseverance, hard work, and a determination to succeed even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds in pursuit of the greater good.