Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

U.S. House, District 32

Republican U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions has been in Congress since 1997, and has represented Texas’ 32nd Congressional District since 2003. The district includes parts of northern and eastern Dallas, the Park Cities and a small part of Collin County. Sessions is seen as a key player in Republican House leadership, chairing the powerful House Rules Committee. He’s was the chief fundraiser for GOP House candidates, and is credited with the Republican takeover of the House in 2010. Sessions is facing his toughest challenge in years from Colin Allred, who worked in the Department of Housing and Urban Development under then-President Obama. Allred, a civil rights lawyer, was an NFL linebacker for the Tennessee Titans. He won the Democratic nomination in a crowded field. Analysts say Sessions is one of the most vulnerable Republican Congressmen in Texas because his district voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in 2016. Sessions won handily that year because he had no Democratic challenger. Both candidates have drawn support from national organizations. A super PAC aligned with House GOP leaders has already booked $2.7 million in TV ads to support Sessions, and President Trump’s super PAC has pledged $2.5 million to support him. Vice President Mike Pence has pledged to campaign for Sessions before the November election. Allred has outraised Sessions, and was added to the Congressional Democrats’ program to support candidates seen as able to flip Republican-held seats. Libertarian Melina Baker is also running, but does not have the campaign infrastructure or funding that Allred and Sessions have.

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  • Pete Sessions
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Colin Allred
    (Dem)

  • Melina Baker
    (L)

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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 35
Education High School: Hillcrest HS Undergraduate: Baylor University Law: University of California Berkeley School of Law
Campaign Phone (469) 573-3916
Website www.colinallred.com
Facebook facebook.com/ColinAllredTX
Twitter @ColinAllredTX
The most critical issue currently facing our state is access to quality, affordable healthcare. Here in North Texas, we have a healthcare crisis with 1 in 5 Dallas County residents, over 500,000 people, lacking coverage. Texas has the highest uninsured rate in the nation with nearly 1 in 6 Texans without health insurance. Many Texans who have insurance still contend with high premiums, high deductibles, and large out-of-pocket costs that render their insurance unusable. Our uninsured problem doesn’t just affect the Texans who can’t see a doctor, we all bear the costs, as those without insurance go to our emergency rooms for treatment that often could have been handled with preventative care on the front end. We can and must do better here in Texas. In Congress, I will encourage the state to expand Medicaid, protect and expand the Affordable Care Act, and introduce a public option such as a Medicare buy-in. These concrete steps will cover more Texans while lowering costs for all of us.
As a DISD graduate, I believe we must do more to support public education. Access to quality education is one of the most important things we can give our children and we are not doing enough to make ensure they get the education they deserve. In Congress, I will fight efforts to cut public education and work to expand investment. Public school funding comes mostly from the state but at the federal level there are steps we can take. We need Universal Pre-K in this country- it’s the best investment we can make in our future, for every $1 we invest, we get at least $8 back. Access to early learning is critical to the development of a child and it’s important for families looking for affordable, safe childcare. Together, we can make sure every child gets the start they deserve. We also need to recruit, train, and retain the best teachers in the world. The most important factor in a child’s development in class is the quality of their teacher and we as a nation must do more to support them
Yes, we must do more to combat the prevalence of gun violence in this country. I reject the idea that random, regular mass shootings are a part of American life. Gun violence is also about more than mass shootings-- we have to do more to protect people across our country from gun violence. In Congress, I will fight for common sense approaches to reducing gun violence. Step 1 is universal background checks. Loopholes in our current laws allow felons, domestic abusers and the severely mentally ill to avoid background checks when buying guns through unlicensed sellers, often online, who are not required to run them. Background checks are the best way to ensure folks who are a danger to themselves or others, cannot buy firearms. We must also work to keep weapons out of the hands on domestic abusers. A woman is 5 times more likely to die if a gun is present in a domestic violence situation. We must close all loopholes that allow abusive dating partners and abusive spouses to purchase guns.
I strongly oppose any effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA). We must not go back to the days when insurers could charge you more or deny you insurance because of a pre-existing condition, when your health care would be cut off when you hit an annual or lifetime cap, when you discovered that a vital treatment you needed isn’t actually covered by your health plan, or when you couldn’t keep your children on your health insurance while they attended college or were trying to get a start in life. The ACA isn’t perfect—no legislation ever is—but it has provided health care to millions of Americans and slowed the skyrocketing cost of health care. The role of government should be to stabilize costs by introducing competition in the marketplace as well as acting as a safety net for those who may be falling through the cracks. Creating competition through a Medicare buy-in and allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices can be a force for good to cover more people and drive down costs.
In order to keep up with this growth, and to make it easier for our products and workforce to get to their destinations, we must invest in our infrastructure. We need to expand and improve our public transportation systems to make this region even more attractive to corporations like Amazon and to make it easier for our workers to get to their jobs. Across the country our roads and bridges are crumbling. Our airports and harbors must be updated for the 21st Century. Our energy grid is at full capacity and is aging rapidly, and we need to expand access to high speed broadband to every region in this country. These projects are not just good for business, they are good for the environment, will create thousands of good paying jobs, and will help us keep pace with our global economic competitors. Infrastructure spending must serve our businesses and our communities and we need to take advantage of wind and solar power to create and grow these methods of powering our state and our country
Growing up in Dallas public schools I was in class with many kids who were undocumented, or whose parents were. But now we see immigration used as a political wedge issue, relying on fear and hate to prevent common sense, bipartisan solutions. Congress must act immediately to pass the DREAM Act to protect the over 800,000 young people who were brought here as children and are serving in our military, teaching in our schools, and contributing to our economy. This is not about documentation, it’s about who we are as a country. We must also pass comprehensive immigration reform, with a pathway to citizenship for those already here. This reform is long overdue. Judge Clay Jenkins has spoken to me about how we have already seen a reduction in the number and frequency of crimes being reported in Latinx communities because of a fear that a simple police report could lead to a deportation of a family member or neighbor. This must end, and as Texans we must lead the way in ending it.
I spent the first 7 years of my life living in the Dallas neighborhood of Oak Lawn and attending a nearby elementary school that was considered to be a struggling school. My aunt and uncle wanted me to attend better Dallas public schools, so they helped my mom and me move to North Dallas, renting a house to my mom for reduced rent a street over from their own home. That move, which placed me on the path to Hillcrest High School changed my life and provided me with opportunities I would not have otherwise had.

I am eternally grateful for my family’s help, but it shouldn’t be the case that your zip code determines your destiny. Both of the homes I grew up in and schools I attended are in the borders of the district I am seeking to represent, but the future for kids in those neighborhoods are drastically different. I am running for Congress to represent everyone in this district and to expand opportunity to all of our residents.
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