Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

State Representative District 2

2-year term. Must be 25 years or older, a US citizen and a resident of Texas. Responsible for representing the citizens of his/her district in the US House of Representatives.

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  • Bill Brannon
    (Dem)

  • Dan Flynn
    (Rep)

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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.

Age 68
Education BA Political Science & History NTSU (UNT)
Campaign Phone (903) 926-1200
Website http://www.billbrannonfortexas.com
Facebook http://Bill Brannon for Texas House District 2
contact Bill Brannon
Of the many important issues facing our state none is more critical to our future than education. One of our guiding Texas values is that every child should have their best opportunity to achieve his or her God given potential. Our commitment to achieving this goal must include properly funding public schools, community colleges and early childhood development. We should also maintain caps on class sizes (particularly in lower grades) and use standardized testing as a tool not a career determining measurement. Additionally we should be sure that educational text books and other teaching tools are created by academic experts in coordination with teachers and administrators. Under funding public education at the state level hurts our property owners, shortchanges our kids, devalues our educators and fails to live up to our promise.
Texas has not historically been over generous in public education funding and has been seriously under funding at the state level since 2011. The legislature has been very reluctant to fundamentally alter the current school funding system. Failing that there must be a review of the "Equal and Uniform" clause in our appraisal guidelines and a renewal of the balance between individual property owners, small businesses and larger corporate property owners. The ability of corporate owners to use expensive legal assistance to take advantage of invalid property comparisons under this clause is resulting in a multi-billion dollar annual revenue shortfall for education and a disproportionate burden being placed on small business and individual owners. I am a strong opponent of vouchers. It is the height of hypocrisy to claim insufficient resources and then divide resources. We should also reconsider the state's investment in areas that are federal responsibility.
Yes. I'm a product of southern gun culture. I don't remember a time when I didn't want a gun and barely remember a time when I didn't have one. I don't want to take anybody's gun and I'm pretty seriously attached to mine. But we need to do some things differently and, hopefully there are things that at least most of us agree on We should do away with the gun show loophole and have universal background checks. No teflon, other armor piercing ammunition or body armor except for law enforcement and military. No expanded clips or silencers. This won't fix everything but it will help.
First, the Affordable Care Act should be repaired not repealed. Every American should have access to affordable available quality health care and if this is to be the case government must have a role. If it's still available the state should expand Medicaid under the ACA. The failure of Texas to take advantage of this opportunity is a textbook example of poor government being driven by political pandering and every result of this failure has been bad. We've lost 18 rural hospitals and others have reduced services. Our local property taxes have gone up, our insurance rates have climbed and, if you go to a hospital and can pay you have to pay more. Many patients that could have been covered are limited to emergency room care which is more expensive and less efficient. We've lost hundreds of billions in economic development. If we believe that it's essential to have affordable insurance coverage for preexisting conditions something like the ACA is going to be required.
Education, infrastructure and housing. I've talked about education in prior response but we have to be sure our schools and teachers have the training and support they must to deal with an ongoing influx of new students with different needs. Our infrastructure is falling behind. Our gas taxes should be used exclusively to meet transportation needs either on our highways or by helping improve mass transit in our urban areas. Housing at all economic levels is becoming more expensive and affordable housing at moderate levels is becoming particularly difficult to find. Better urban and suburban planning is important but expanding economic opportunities including enhanced broadband access and transportation in more rural areas can also help improve this situation.
Humanity and honesty are the first two words that come to mind. As to humanity: It's not unique to rural communities but being from one that has an economic history with agriculture and dairy I've been associated with paperless folks for a long time. In my experience they're very much like me. They work hard, care about their family and play by the rules. Their kids went to school same as mine and hoped for the same kind of future. It doesn't serve anyone's interest to keep an entire population in the shadows or in fear of interacting with police and other aspects of our government. Depriving ourselves of the talents and capacities of Dreamers is both mean spirited and economically stupid. Policies should be enacted to allow people who are here to achieve legal status. As to honesty: If the state truly believes illegal workers are a problem it could be largely if not completely solved by e-varify. If they're not willing to do that they're just pandering.
In 1963 I was about five miles from the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham when it was bombed by the Klan. Four young girls died that day and many others were injured. I know the language that was being used by the Governor and the Police Commissioner regarding integration. They didn't plant the bomb or light the fuse but they sure didn't put it out either. I can't say it shaped every bit of my life from that day forward but it did teach me that words matter--a lot. It taught me that when we start referring to any group--police officers, journalists, Muslims, African Americans, Mexicans or refugees--as something other that people we're inviting trouble. When we start employing terms like animals, vermin and infestation we're unlocking terrible permissions for bad actors to act badly. Words matter. We can do better.
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