Author Archive

Thank You Democrats For Leaving! Look At All We Accomplished!

September 5, 2021

On Thursday night, the Texas Legislature adjourned our second special (extra) legislative session of this year.  Just as predicted, the Democrat’s publicity stunt leaving Texas was a complete and utter failure.  They took chartered flights, hobnobbed in D.C.—with some even taking European vacations—but in the end, they couldn’t stop us.  We were still able to decisively advance our Republican agenda.

On a personal note, I still don’t believe House Democrats faced the necessary consequences for leaving and wasting taxpayer money.  There has been no punishment, no discipline.  Nonetheless, in the end, they learned an important lesson.  That lesson is that when you don’t show up for work you don’t have a voice at the table.

Now, having completed the 87th Regular Session May 31st and two subsequent special sessions, we have some great new law and policy that will benefit all Texans.  And by the way, Terry and I want to thank everyone for the encouragement as we’ve struggled through this year in Austin.  It was definitely difficult and one for the history books.    

The legislature will now take a few weeks off and then we will be right back to the Capitol for another special session to work on redistricting.  As you know, the U.S. and Texas constitutions require that the legislature redraw the district boundaries for all Congressional, House, Senate and SBOE seats. This is always a very difficult process.  In fact, the Democrats filed a new federal law suit to block the process just last week.  They’ve asked that unelected federal judges draw the maps rather than the people you sent to Austin.    

Here are some of the Texas Legislature’s recent conservative wins.  I look forward to going over these with you in more detail soon.

Texas is now the most pro-life state in the nation
Heartbeat Bill: Abortions are now banned at the detection of a fetal heartbeat—generally considered to be around six weeks. 
Trigger Legislation: Effective September 1st, Texas has a “trigger” law in place.  This means that should the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade Texas will automatically revert back to pre-Roe law.  Prior to Roe abortion was illegal in Texas.  
Mail Order Abortion Banned: Legislation passed just last week will ban the abortion inducing RU-486 drug from being mailed and delivered as if it were an over the counter medicine without seeing a doctor.     
Fetal Dismemberment: (It’s disturbing to even type that.)  In 2017, we passed a prohibition on this method of abortion. Abortion providers immediately filed suit and the courts have blocked this prohibition for four years.  In August, Texas finally prevailed and that ban is now law across our state.

Texas passed sweeping reforms on election integrity making it easier to vote and harder to cheat.  I believe our new Texas statute could become a model for the nation.  SB 1 provides practical reforms to restore public confidence, including consistent statewide standards, simple and secure election processes, greater transparency mechanisms, and will reduce unlawful voting practices.  

Texas is doing more than any other state (and frankly the nation) to secure the border and combat drug and human trafficking.   In August the Texas Legislature allocated an additional $1.8 billion to border security.  These funds will help build a border wall and will also fund deployment of additional state law enforcement, National Guard and State Guard personnel.    

Critical Race Theory is banned from Texas public schools. CRT is a moving target.  Legislation was passed earlier this year but we realized we needed to make clarifications and strengthen that new law.  More civics training will be included for teachers and the harmful teachings of CRT will not be permitted in our public schools.  

Providing tax relief. Texans are being taxed out of their homes and 76% of Texas homeowners now see property taxes as a “major burden.”  We implemented helpful property tax relief that will provide homebuyers with a homestead exemption immediately following their purchase and also give elderly and disabled homeowners more relief.  (I confess that I am very frustrated that more substantial and across the board tax relief failed to pass.)   

Bail reform. The mismanagement of the bail system, almost entirely in urban counties, forced the legislature to take action.  We cannot allow violent criminals to be released into our communities unimpeded.  Many tragedies have resulted because dangerous criminals were released from jail—often on low bonds and even just their personal recognizance.  Hopefully our new statute will help end this practice which is usually seen in our more liberal communities. 

Social Media Censorship: HB 20 is intended to help safeguard our freedom of speech by protecting social media users from being censored for their express viewpoints. It includes legal remedies for those wrongfully excluded.  (My wife, Terry, was recently banned from Facebook for 30 days.  Apparently, joking with your daughter that it’s time to come “kidnap” the grandkids for a stay at our home is dangerous.  I guess terrorists and the Ayatollahs just never use the word kidnap….)

Public Education: We need our kids to be in the classroom but, with the continuing onslaught of COVID-19, the legislature provided additional funding and strategies for virtual education.  (One of my granddaughters tested positive just yesterday.  So their family will be out of the classroom studying from home for a couple weeks.)  

I will do my best to keep you posted as we begin redistricting.  And as always, please give me a call or send me an email if you have any comments, thoughts or questions.

Sincerely, 

Vaccine/Mask Mandates and Critical Race Theory

August 16, 2021

COVID-19 Mandates 

I’ve received a lot of questions about mask and vaccine mandates.  I do not believe that any government agency in Texas, including schools, should be allowed to mandate masks or vaccinations.  Those decisions should be left up to individuals, parents, etc.  

I have also always avoided government telling businesses what to do.  However, I do not believe that businesses should require employees to be vaccinated as a condition of employment.  Vaccinations are a personal health care decision.  

This report by Alliance Defending Freedom provides guidance to employees, students, military personnel and churches encountering COVID-19 vaccination mandates.  It’s well worth the read.  It can be found HERE.  

Critical Race Theory 

This weekend, the Epoch Times published my editorial on Critical Race Theory.  I hope you will take a moment to read it and then share your thoughts with me.  The article can be read HERE or see below.

The Democrats Are Still Gone!

July 27, 2021

It is day 20 of the 30-day Special Legislative Session.  Rumors were circulating that the Democrats might slowly trickle in this week but it isn’t looking very hopeful.  The Texas Constitution requires that we have two-thirds of the House present (100 legislators) to conduct any business but we only have 83 Republicans.  During the recent legislative session that concluded in May we had many important accomplishments.  However, between the COVID-19 pandemic and Winter Storm Uri we ended with critical issues yet to be addressed.  Most of those issues were added to the agenda when Governor Abbott called this Special Session.  Unfortunately, just four days after we convened the Democrats fled in private chartered jets to D.C. 

The consequences of the Democrats cut-and-run decision will be extremely high.  Aside from wasting your taxpayer dollars on a convened Legislature that can take no action (about $1 million a month) the entire legislative branch of Texas government will be defunded September 1.  This is in addition to the neglect of all the very important issues we are here to tackle.  Issues like securing our elections, reducing abortions, cutting property taxes, stopping CRT in schools, border security, etc.  These will fall by the wayside.  Also, if the Legislature is defunded it means all staff will be furloughed, constituent services will stop, all district office rents will go unpaid, no office phones or internet…the list goes on.  

Please know that I will continue to be in Austin waiting for the Democrats and to fulfill my obligations as your state representative.  I don’t know what the Democrat’s end game is but I know it will be a complete failure for them.  I hope that all Texans will hold accountable those who fled Texas and their constituents on this failed publicity stunt.  

Here is a reminder of all that is on our session agenda.  I have also urged Governor Abbott to add a ban on child medical gender modification (criminalizing it as child abuse) and SB 14 which I authored in the last session.  SB 14 prevents cities from regulating private employers employment practices forcing business to operate differently city to city, town to town.  

  • ELECTION INTEGRITY: Legislation strengthening the integrity of elections in Texas.
  • ABORTION-INDUCING DRUGS: Legislation to prohibit people from providing abortion-inducing drugs by mail or delivery service, strengthens the laws applicable to the reporting of abortions and abortion complications, and ensures that no abortion-inducing drugs are provided unless there is voluntary and informed consent.
  • BAIL REFORM: Legislation reforming the bail system in Texas to protect the public from accused criminals who may be released on bail.
  • THIRTEENTH CHECK: Legislation relating to a “thirteenth check” or one-time supplemental payment of benefits under the Teacher Retirement System of Texas.
  • ARTICLE X FUNDING: Legislation providing appropriations to the Legislature and legislative agencies in Article X of the General Appropriations Act.
  • BORDER SECURITY: Legislation providing funding to support law-enforcement agencies, counties, and other strategies as part of Texas’ comprehensive border security plan.
  • SOCIAL MEDIA CENSORSHIP: Legislation safeguarding the freedom of speech by protecting social-media users from being censored by social-media companies based on the user’s expressed viewpoints, including by providing a legal remedy for those wrongfully excluded from a platform.
  • FAMILY VIOLENCE PREVENTION: Legislation requiring schools to provide appropriate education to middle and high school student about dating violence, domestic violence, and child abuse, but that recognizes the right of parents to opt their children out of the instruction.
  • YOUTH SPORTS: Legislation disallowing a student from competing in University Interscholastic League athletic competitions designated for the sex opposite to the student’s sex at birth.
  • CRITICAL RACE THEORY: Legislation similar to House Bill 3979 concerning critical race theory as originally passed by the Texas Senate in the 87th Legislature, Regular Session.
  • APPROPRIATIONS: Legislation providing appropriations from additional available general revenue for the following purposes:
    • property-tax relief;
    • enhanced protection for the safety of children in Texas’ foster-care system by attracting and retaining private providers for the system; and
    • to better safeguard the state from potential cybersecurity threats.

Special Session Update & Agenda: Where are the Democrats??

July 15, 2021

I know many of you feel a sense of urgency about the House Democrats fleeing Texas to D.C. on their private jet.  I do as well.  Believe me, I don’t like being stuck in Austin all summer away from family, work, church and my constituents. I don’t like missing our family vacation (they’re in Colorado as I write this).  But it is my duty to show up and do the people’s work. 

The Democrats fled because THEY believe the items on our Republican special session agenda are bad for Texans—things like secure elections, reducing abortions, cutting property taxes, stopping CRT in schools, border security, etc.  The Democrats apparently despise these things and don’t have the courage for a debate—enough to run away from the state.  We will wait them out.  The Democrats will wear out eventually and return and be brought to the Texas Capitol by state police if necessary.

In the end we will get our Republican agenda done.  It just will take some time.  I’ve been through this before in 2003 when they fled to Oklahoma.  It calls for patient endurance but in the end Texas wins.  The Democrats will fail and will face serious consequences.

Here’s more back story on what got us to today—-

On July 8th, the Texas Legislature convened the 87th 1st called Special Session.  To start, the Governor added 11 legislative priorities to the special session agenda and he is expected to add more.  It’s a strong, ambitious pro-business, pro-family, law & order agenda.

In the first four days of special session incredible progress was made in the House.  The election integrity and bail reform bills were heard and passed out of a 23.5 hour committee hearing.  Legislation to give our retired teachers a 13th check was passed out of committee.  Hearings were scheduled on an array of topics such as preventing abortion-inducing drugs from be mailed, discussion on the humanitarian crisis on the border and the impact for unaccompanied minors, a critical update on the status of our electricity grid and progress toward implementing new policies, redistricting hearings to receive stakeholder input and more. 

And all of this came to a screeching halt when the Democrats decided to run away from doing the job Texans elected us to do, breaking the constitutional quorum required for us to do business in the Texas House.  The next morning, Tuesday, my colleagues and I passed a “call of the House” to secure the return of absent Democrat members until we have a quorum.  This “call” directs the DPS to locate, detain and bring the missing Democrats back to the Capitol. Unfortunately, DPS does not have jurisdiction outside of Texas.  That’s why the Democrats fled the state.  The call also means that we who are present are confined to the House chamber through August 6th unless the Speaker gives permission to members to leave for a period of time.  I have today’s House pass in my pocket as I type this over lunch.

Please be praying for the members of the Texas House and our families.  The opportunity to serve is an honor but it can be a sacrifice at times—-especially for our family.  It requires us to spend a lot of time away from our loved ones, our community and our businesses.  It’s frustrating sitting idly by while the Democrats wine and dine in DC.  When the Democrats do return, tensions will be very high.  We must always treat others the way we want to be treated.  However, before this concludes there must be serious consequences to deter this type of behavior again.  Pray that we make the right choices and decisions for our district and Texas.  

As always, I really appreciate hearing from you and am eager to listen. Your calls and emails to the office are a tremendous help.  Please don’t hesitate to reach out if I can ever be of assistance.


Sincerely, 

The special session agenda currently includes:

  • BAIL REFORM: Legislation reforming the bail system in Texas to protect the public from accused criminals who may be released on bail.
  • ELECTION INTEGRITY: Legislation strengthening the integrity of elections in Texas.
  • ABORTION-INDUCING DRUGS: Legislation to prohibit people from providing abortion-inducing drugs by mail or delivery service, strengthens the laws applicable to the reporting of abortions and abortion complications, and ensures that no abortion-inducing drugs are provided unless there is voluntary and informed consent.
  • THIRTEENTH CHECK: Legislation relating to a “thirteenth check” or one-time supplemental payment of benefits under the Teacher Retirement System of Texas.
  • ARTICLE X FUNDING: Legislation providing appropriations to the Legislature and legislative agencies in Article X of the General Appropriations Act.
  • BORDER SECURITY: Legislation providing funding to support law-enforcement agencies, counties, and other strategies as part of Texas’ comprehensive border security plan.
  • SOCIAL MEDIA CENSORSHIP: Legislation safeguarding the freedom of speech by protecting social-media users from being censored by social-media companies based on the user’s expressed viewpoints, including by providing a legal remedy for those wrongfully excluded from a platform.
  • FAMILY VIOLENCE PREVENTION: Legislation requiring schools to provide appropriate education to middle and high school students about dating violence, domestic violence, and child abuse, but that recognizes the right of parents to opt their children out of the instruction.
  • YOUTH SPORTS: Legislation disallowing a student from competing in University Interscholastic League athletic competitions designated for the sex opposite to the student’s sex at birth.
  • CRITICAL RACE THEORY: Legislation similar to House Bill 3979 concerning critical race theory as originally passed by the Texas Senate in the 87th Legislature, Regular Session.
  • APPROPRIATIONS: Legislation providing appropriations from additional available general revenue for the following purposes:
    • property-tax relief;
    • enhanced protection for the safety of children in Texas’ foster-care system by attracting and retaining private providers for the system; and
    • to better safeguard the state from potential cybersecurity threats.

Special Session Edition: Election Integrity and Bail Reform

June 30, 2021

On Thursday, July 8th, the Texas Legislature will convene our first special session following the 87th Regular Legislative Session which ended on May 31st.  Over the last few weeks, I’ve shared with you the many accomplishments of the recent legislative session but I also mentioned there was much work left undone.  Over the next week, I’d like to discuss the announced agenda for the special session, as well as other subject matter I’d like to see added.   

A “special session” is very different than a constitutionally called “regular session” like the one that just adjourned in May.  A special session can only be “called” by the governor and the maximum duration for a special session is 30 days.  The governor declares what policy issues/session topics are on the call and we are limited to working on just those topics.  The governor can enumerate all topics at the onset or gradually add to the call while the legislature is convened.  There is not a limit on how many special sessions can be called and they can be called back-to-back.   

Governor Abbott has not issued an official proclamation of topics.  However, based on his public statements we know will be covering election integrity, bail reform, Critical Race Theory, redistricting and allocating federal funds appropriated to states through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.  Both redistricting and the federal funding will be addressed in the fall at a subsequent special session. 

ICYMI: Both the omnibus election integrity bill (SB7) and the bail reform bill (HB 20/HJR) died on the House calendar in May when House democrats left the House chamber breaking the quorum.  (The Texas Constitution requires that 2/3 of the 150 House members be present to conduct business.  Republicans have only an eight vote majority.)

Quorum busting is an inappropriate tactic that has been used on rare occasion to kill legislation.  In 2003, the House democrats, knowing they did not have the votes to stop a bill, left during the night and stayed in Oklahoma for weeks.  The next month, the Senate democrats broke quorum and spent weeks in New Mexico.  So, bottom line, there is no guarantee that the democrats won’t bust the quorum again to stop the election integrity bill from passing.

The following is a summary of what Republicans legislators hope to accomplish on election integrity this upcoming special session.  I’ve also included a graphic on the efforts to reform the criminal bail system.  In my next email (and FB post) I’ll share my thoughts on Critical Race Theory and the need for legislation barring it from our schools. 

Election Integrity

The overall goal is simply to ensure that in Texas it is easy to vote and hard to cheat.  The bill components will likely include: 

Bail Reform 

Legislative Accomplishments: A Balanced Budget and Enhancing Border Security

June 25, 2021

This is my ninth and final installment on accomplishments in the recent Texas legislative session that adjourned May 31st.  Much good work has been overlooked.  However, there was also much left undone.  Next week I’ll begin to layout some things I believe the Texas Legislature must accomplish in the special session starting on July 8th and other special sessions expected in early fall. 

A Balanced Budget

Every biennium, the Texas Legislature is required to pass a balanced budget that directs how much the state government can spend in the upcoming fiscal year. Unlike Washington, we are prohibited from spending more revenue than we collect and we are always trying to tighten our belts.  We began this budgeting process in the midst of a pandemic and a cloud of uncertainty, but I’m proud to say we were able to reduce the overall budget by roughly 5% without raising taxes while still funding our commitments to public education, border security efforts and more.  Staying under all constitutional and new statutory spending limits is always a priority. 

Also noteworthy in the budget is $1.2 billion for the biennium we dedicated to enhance border security efforts.  This included more boots on the ground, funds to combat human trafficking, additional funds for DPS border operations and more. 


Enhanced Border Security

In recent weeks it has become crystal clear that Biden administration has blatant disregard for the humanitarian and drug smuggling crisis on our border.  The influx of illegal immigrants, drugs, human trafficking and gang activity is at some of the highest levels we have ever seen.  Unfortunately, since it doesn’t appear the federal government is going to step up and help secure the border, Texas will take the lead to ensure our own safety and security.

Last week, several items were announced on Texas’ plan to build a wall and combat human and drug trafficking at the border.  I fully expect border security to be a focus of our upcoming special sessions.  Below is a summary of what Texas is doing: 

How will we build a border wall? The Governor has directed the Texas Facilities Commission to hire a program manager who will have complete oversight of the project. He will be responsible for the entire planning, construction, and execution of the wall.  He will work to hire contractors, identify state land and private land that can be used, and negotiate how, when, and where the wall will be built.

How much will this cost? Last week, a transfer of $250 million was made as a down payment to get us started.  And, as noted above, the state budget also allocated $1.2 billion toward border security.  Once the program manager is hired and the planning process is underway we will have more definitive numbers.  In the meantime, anyone who wishes to do so can donate by mail to the border wall by clicking HERE

What else are we doing? We have a new task force in place comprised of members from the Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Division of Emergency Management, Texas Military Department, Texas Commission on Law Enforcement and more.  They will have bi-weekly meetings to assess the most up to date situation at the border and find solutions.  We have also invoked the Emergency Management Assistance Compact with Arizona to work collaboratively on making arrests, detaining criminals and stopping illegal crossings.  And, lastly, we have issued a disaster declaration committing more resources, law enforcement personnel, and funds to address this crisis than ever before.

President Biden’s egregious inaction and inability to secure our border has opened the door to an overwhelming amount of criminal activity that has threatened the safety and wellbeing of Texans.  But, once again, the Lone Star State has stepped up and made substantial moves to strengthen our border and protect Texans.

 Starting next week, I will be sharing my thoughts on upcoming special sessions and what issues we need to address and what I will be working on and supporting.

Legislative Accomplishments: Back the Blue Legislation and Prioritizing Our Children & Retired Teachers

June 23, 2021

This is my eighth installment on accomplishments in the recent Texas legislative session that adjourned May 31st.  Much good work has been overlooked.  However, there was also much left undone.  So, when I finish this series, I’ll layout some things I believe the Texas Legislature must accomplish in the special sessions coming later this summer and early fall.

 Back the Blue Legislation 

The year we passed several priority items to support law enforcement.  Passing proactive measures is always a win but sometimes what is even more meaningful (that goes unnoticed) is defeating harmful proposed new legislation.  The anti-law enforcement agenda filed by the Democrats this session was very strong.  As a former police officer, I spent a lot of time just trying to fix (or more often kill) those proposed anti-law enforcement bills.  Fortunately, we were able to stop a lot of bad legislation from passing. 

HB 9, HB 1900, HB 2366 and SB 23 were all passed to prevent large cities and counties from their efforts to defund the police.  We also needed these bills to deal with violent protests which have been so prevalent.

HB 9 – Enhances the criminal penalty to a state jail felony offense for anyone who knowingly blocks an emergency vehicle or obstructs access to a hospital or health care facility.

HB 2366 – Enhances criminal penalties for the use of laser pointers and creates an offense for the use of fireworks to harm or obstruct the police.

HB 1900 – Freezes property tax revenues for cities with population over 250,000 that defund the police and allows the state to withhold sales tax collections. Those withheld funds will be given to DPS to fund the use of state resources to protect residents of a defunded municipality. 

SB 23 – Requires voter approval to reduce law enforcement budgets in counties with a population of more than one million.  If voter approval is not received, but the county still defunds the police, the county’s property tax revenue will be frozen.  


Prioritizing Our Children and Retired Teachers 

In the 2019 legislative session, Texas made a huge commitment to better fund our schools and teachers.  Knowing that the state’s budget would be leaner this year, making sure we fulfilled that 2019 financial commitment to education was a top priority.  This one pager highlights some of the success this session in supporting our kids education, which included maintaining our financial commitment to both the children, teachers and our retired teachers.  Additionally, as I discussed in a prior email, our new legislative initiatives focusing on a robust broadband infrastructure will also help us improve remote learning and innovation in educating outside the classroom.     

I’ll continue this series with another installment in just a few days. 

Legislative Accomplishments: Health Care Reform and Protecting Religious Liberty

June 21, 2021

This is my seventh installment on accomplishments in the recent Texas legislative session that adjourned May 31st.  Much good work has been overlooked.  However, there was also much left undone.  So, when I finish this series, I’ll layout some things I believe the Texas Legislature must accomplish in the special sessions coming later this summer and early fall.

Health Care Reform: Expanding Access to Care and TeleHealth 

A priority this legislative session was the expansion of telemedicine and overall access to affordable healthcare services.  During the pandemic, having robust broadband and telehealth services became more critical for Texans than we had ever expected.  Although there is much left to do in improving access and affordability some very good progress was made. 

HB 4 – Expands telemedical services eligible for reimbursement. 

HB 18 – Lowers prescription costs by establishing a self-replenishing fund for prescription rebates to serve uninsured and under-insured Texans. 

HB 2056 – Allows for teledentistry practices to serve rural Texans.

SB 1137 – Requires hospitals to disclose to the public certain health care information, including a list of standard charges and shoppable services.

HB 3752 – Creates the Texas Mutual Health Coverage Plan available to individuals and small businesses who lack traditional health insurance.  This will allow cost-effective solutions and affordable health insurance to the marketplace. 

HB 3924 – Authorizes the Texas Farm Bureau to offer a health benefit plan to its members giving rural Texans better access to competitive health plans.  

Protecting Religious Liberty 

During the pandemic, we all witnessed disturbing displays of government overreach.  I was shocked to see houses of worship actually ordered closed.  Almost all Texans would agree that the First Amendment unequivocally guarantees our freedom to gather in worship and that government has no role in religious practices and should never interfere.  Yet it became apparent that we needed to reinforce this principle in Texas law.  So, four bills were passed to make it clear that religious liberty is paramount across our state. 

HB 1239, SB 581 and SB 525 were passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Governor Abbott to ensure that going forward religious liberties would be protected in Texas.  Of greatest importance is SJR 27 which is a proposed amendment to the Texas Constitution.  If approved by the voters next November it will place into the Texas Constitution a specific prohibition on the closing of houses of worship by local officials. 

I’ll continue this series with another installment in just a few days.   

Legislative Accomplishments: Spending Limits, Rural Broadband & Business Liability Protections

June 18, 2021

This is my sixth installment on accomplishments in the recent Texas legislative session that adjourned May 31st.  Much good work has been overlooked.  However, there was also much left undone.  So, when I finish this series, I’ll layout some things I believe the Texas Legislature must accomplish in the special sessions coming later this summer and early fall.


Spending Limits 

SB 1136 will limit the growth of state government in Texas by capping government spending.  Government spending is out of control in Washington, DC but we will not allow that to happen in Texas.  This new law will very effectively limit the rate of growth in state spending by capping each new state budget at a factor of population growth adjusted for inflation. 

Rural Broadband 

Major reforms were passed this session to address the need for rural broadband and help accelerate its deployment.  COVID-19 highlighted the critical importance of a robust broadband infrastructure network.  Remote learning, access to telemedicine, economic development and other facets of life hinge on the availability of dependable high speed internet.  HB 6 creates a broadband expansion plan to deliver high-speed internet to underserved areas in Texas.  Other measures such as HB 1505 and HB 3853 were also passed that will help expedite the process to deliver high speed internet.  

Business Liability Protections 

SB 6 amends current law relating to liability for certain claims arising during a pandemic or a disaster related to a pandemic.  This legislation will provide retroactive lawsuit protections for large and small businesses, religious institutions, non-profit entities, healthcare providers, first responders, and education institutions to assist with post-pandemic recovery efforts.   

Legislative Accomplishments: Reasserting the Tenth Amendment and Second Amendment Protections

June 16, 2021

This is my fifth installment on accomplishments in the recent Texas legislative session that adjourned May 31st.  Much good work has been overlooked.  However, there was also much left undone.  So, when I finish this series, I’ll layout some things I believe the Texas Legislature must accomplish in the special sessions coming later this summer and early fall. 

Reasserting the Tenth Amendment 

We are all “fed up” with the federal government’s overreach.  Our Tenth Amendment has remained under assault now for many decades as Congress and federal courts act in direct violation of the Constitution.  The Tenth Amendment was intended to hold Washington DC in check, preventing federal encroachment into our individual liberties and into the sovereign authority of the several states.   SCR 12, which I authored and carried in the House, reasserts Texas’ sovereignty over all powers not specifically enumerated in the U.S. Constitution and thereby granted to the federal government.  SCR 12 serves as a formal demand from Texas to Washington to halt its flagrant disregard for the U.S. Constitution and the inalienable rights of all Texans.  


Second Amendment Protections 

The Second Amendment is under attack by the Biden administration.  Texas adopted several preemptive measures to ensure your right to defend yourself, your family and your property.  Tomorrow, Governor Abbott will be at the Alamo for a bill signing ceremony to officially make the policies listed below new law in Texas. 
 HB 957 – Removes federal restrictions on firearm suppressors that are manufactured in Texas.

HB 1500 – Protects gun and ammo stores from being shut down by local or state officials during a disaster declaration.

HB 1927 – Known as Constitutional Carry, this legislation allows all law-abiding Texans age 21 and older to carry a holstered handgun for personal protection while observing all safe gun practices. 

HB 2622 – Naming Texas a Second Amendment Sanctuary State, providing another layer of protection against federal overreach.

SB 19 – Prohibits state contracts with companies that discriminate against firearm or ammunition companies.

SB 20 – Prohibits a hotel from adopting a firearms policy that prohibits a hotel guest from storing a handgun or ammunition in the guest’s hotel room or vehicle. 

SB 550 – Allows one to use any type of holster when properly carrying a handgun in Texas either openly or concealed.