Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

U.S. Senator

Republican Senator Ted Cruz is running for a second term, and his campaign focuses on his accomplishments over the last six years. That includes authoring and passing 32 pieces of legislation. He highlights his 100 percent rating by anti-abortion and pro-Israel groups. He also touts his support of gun rights, the border wall and efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. His Democratic opponent is El Paso Congressman Beto O'Rourke, who is campaigning on trying to fix the dysfunction in Washington. He made headlines last year when he livestreamed a road trip from Texas to the U.S. Capitol with Republican Congressman Will Hurd. O'Rourke holds directly opposite views from Cruz on issues like guns and abortion rights, the Affordable Care Act and immigration.Cruz and O’Rourke have sparred in two lively debates ahead of the election. You can read about the first one here and the second debate here. Libertarian Neal Dikeman is running on the traditional issues pushed by the third party, including individual freedoms, privacy and getting the “government out of the bedroom.” Dikeman also wants to pass legislation that creates a clearly defined path to citizenship.

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  • Ted Cruz
    (Rep)

  • Neal M. Dikeman
    (L)

  • Candidate picture

    Beto O'Rourke
    (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 46
Education B.A. in English Literature, Columbia University
Campaign Phone (915) 730-3876
Website http://betofortexas.com
Facebook http://www.facebook.com/betoorourke
Twitter twitter.com/BetoORourke
website http://betofortexas.com
contact Beto@betofortexas.com
We need to work together to ensure that every single Texan can live to their full potential. That means ensuring they are able to see a doctor, afford their prescriptions, and get the care they need -- not as a function of luck or circumstance, but as a basic right. It also means ensuring an economy that works for everyone, where every Texan who wants a job can find a job that pays more than a living wage. It means leading the way in rewriting our immigration laws to reflect our values and our interests. And it means ensuring that every single child can get a high-quality education.
Every single child deserves access to a high-quality education. We must increase federal funding for public schools, keep public school dollars in public school classrooms, and ensure equity in funding. Prioritizing education also means finally paying our teachers a higher salary, ending the Windfall Elimination Provision, and taking care of our retired teachers who have recently seen their healthcare costs double.
Texas should lead the way in preserving the 2nd Amendment while ensuring people can live without fear of gun violence in their communities. Let’s require background checks for all gun sales and close all loopholes; give federal help to local school districts to improve on-campus safety; and fully support federal research on gun violence so that we can better understand and address its root causes.
I want Texas, the least insured state in the country, to lead the way in not only safeguarding protections for those with pre-existing conditions and lowering costs for working families, but also in expanding Medicaid, letting anyone buy into Medicare, and guaranteeing universal, high-quality health care so every man, woman, and child in this state can see a doctor, afford their prescriptions, and be well enough to live to their full potential.
That so many people continue to move to our state is a huge vote of confidence. New and returning Texans bring innovation and dynamism to our state, and we must ensure our public infrastructure is able to take advantage of this growth. We need to invest in highways, public transit and our public utilities to ease congestion in Texas cities and ensure everyone can thrive. We need to invest in affordable housing to protect residents in the face of rising housing costs. And we must invest in our schools so that all students have access to high-quality education and can compete for the jobs of the future.
I want Texas -- the most diverse state in the country and the defining border state -- to take the lead on rewriting our immigration laws to reflect our values, our interests, and our experiences. My home city of El Paso is routinely ranked as one of the safest states in the country -- not in spite of, but because we are a city of immigrants where we treat one another with dignity and respect. Where we remember that much of our strength, success, and security as a state and as a country depends on the immigrants who contribute to our society. That’s the place I want us to lead from so that we can stop family separation, ensure that every separated family is reunified, pass the DREAM Act, provide immigrants with a fair path to work and citizenship, and ensure that everyone who comes to this country can contribute to their full potential.
Reading the Odyssey in my El Paso public school changed my life. It opened up new worlds for me and sparked a lifelong love of learning that I still retain to this day.