Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

State Representative District 52

General Election: November 6, 2018Early Voting: October 22 - November 2, 2018

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    Cynthia Flores

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    James Talarico

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Biographical Information

What legislation would you support to provide quality public education for all children?

What changes to Texas gun laws would you support or oppose?

What are your top three budget priorities for the 2019 Legislative session?

What other issue do you consider most important and how would you address it?

Background Wife and mother of two. Has lived in Round Rock for 20 years. Parishioner of St. William Catholic Church
Education University of North Texas, BS Rehabilitation Studies Minors :Spanish, Communication Disorders
I support increasing the state share of education funding, reducing our reliance on property taxes. I advocate for reducing standardized tests, knowing parents evaluate schools on a variety of measures. I would rather evaluate schools based on individual student progress. I also support investing new resources in reading, math, and all STEM subjects.
I support Governor Abbott’s plan, which would make our schools safer, and invest new resources in mental health. I do believe in the fundamental right of law-abiding citizens to own firearms and protect themselves from harm.
Education is my top budget priority – both public education and higher education – because a quality education opens the door to a lifetime of opportunity. I will also prioritize investments in health care, including mental health, and have 30 years of experience working in the health and human services fields. We must also prioritize criminal justice, including dedicating resources to stopping human trafficking of women and children.
We have to protect the Texas business climate, that creates jobs and income for families, and that helps fund vital services without raising taxes. As a leader in the Round Rock Chamber, I know how vital it is that we invest in better roads and infrastructure, improve career and technology education and keep taxes low and regulations fair in order to maintain our competitive edge.
Background James is a Round Rock native and community leader. He taught middle school before leading a nonprofit that provides innovative technology to schools.
Education B.A. in Government from The University of Texas at Austin, M.A. in Education Policy from Harvard University.
As a former public school teacher, I understand what goes into educating the next generation. I’ve put education front-and-center in this campaign and will do so in the Legislature. My first priority for education is to overhaul our unconstitutional school financing system top-to-bottom. I believe that we need to return to, at minimum, pre-2011 levels of funding for our schools. We need to incorporate more technology in our classroom, reduce our reliance on standardized testing, and ensure adequate funding to more than just core subjects, such as the arts, athletics, and extra-curriculars.
I support common-sense gun safety measures. That means universal background checks, strengthening wait periods, and restricting weapons of war. Further, we need to prevent those with a history of violence from accessing firearms. This means prioritizing gun violence prevention. While laws banning domestic abusers from having weapons are codified, they are poorly enforced and don’t go nearly far enough. As an educator, I will work across the political aisle to protect our schools from this gun violence epidemic, while opposing any attempt to our arm our teachers.
Fixing our school finance system is my top policy priority. Our state has underfunded public schools, leaving local taxpayers to pick up the tab. I will work to properly fund schools and relieve taxpayers. Secondly, families in Williamson County are being squeezed by healthcare costs. We need to expand affordable care, starting with Medicaid expansion, and defend access to women's healthcare. Finally, Texas has wrested control away from local city councils and governments to impose extreme agendas on Texans. We need a legislator who will defend local control, not impose a radical agenda.
We need to address voter suppression and gerrymandering. Voter ID laws are the newest attempt in a long history of voter suppression efforts. I oppose any effort to make voting more difficult, including reducing early voting periods and limiting the approved forms of valid ID. I support making voting as accessible as possible, including online registration and making election day a holiday. In addition, electoral lines need to be drawn independently. The only way to do this is with a non-partisan commission, tasked with creating fair districts that no longer disenfranchise Texans.