Southeast Texas School Board chairman seeks to challenge right-wing Rep. Ernest Bailes
The district now includes San Jacinto, Liberty, and Hardin counties, as well as part of eastern Montgomery County.
HD 18 is class R-83% on The Texan‘s Texas Partisan Index, indicating that he overwhelmingly favors Republicans. No Democrats are running for the seat.
Prior to the redistricting, Rep. James White (R-Hillister) represented the East Texas District. Bailes is the starter now that the district has been redrawn.
White is not running for re-election to the Texas House, but is seeking the Republican nomination for agriculture commissioner.
Bailes was among nine Republicans who joined Democrats in defending the Medicaid expansion. In an analysis by political scientist Mark P. Jones, Bailes was ranked 65th on a list of 150 House lawmakers, from most conservative to most liberal in ascending order.
In the latest campaign finance report, Bailes reported $29,265 in campaign contributions.
Janis Holtwhich currently serves as presiding trustee for the Silsbee Independent School District, emphasized his opposition to critical race theory and called it a “Marxist ideology” rather than a legitimate curriculum.
When asked how to balance opposition to critical race theory with local control, Holt emphasized his belief that critical race theory is different from other issues such as how much a district allocates. to its agricultural programs.
“When you talk about an ideology that can harm our children and it teaches our children to look at themselves based solely on their skin color, then I believe that all levels of government must work together to eradicate an ideology as dangerous,” Holt mentioned.
Highlight the increase in teenage suicidesshe criticized the government’s response to COVID-19 and said resources should be made available to help struggling students.
“I’ve seen the loss of learning that’s happened over the last couple of years with COVID, and then I’ve also seen alarmingly how our children’s socialization has been significantly hampered due to the fact that kids have to wear those masks,” Holt said. .
The candidate criticized Bailes for receiving low ratings from conservative groups such as Texas right to life and Texas Young Conservatives. The first gave Bailes a 68% rating and the second gave the incumbent a 60% rating.
The National Rifle Association has approved Bailes, but the Texas chapter of Gun Owners of America has approved Holt.
Holt also argued that Bailes should have supported abolish committee chairs democrats who exceeded quorum block the review of electoral reform.
As a member of Election Integrity Protection Actthe legislator downgraded the penalty for illegal voting from a felony to a misdemeanor. Holt thinks the sentence should be reset to a felony.
The Republican also argued that border security is “crucial to everything else we want to do” and advocated border wall finish and strengthening security measures.
“I have no animosity against Rep. Bailes. He’s a nice man and I’m sure he’s a wonderful father and husband,” Holt said. “I just believe there’s a contrast between the values I have and the values he’s voted for in the past.”
Holt brought in $1,154 in campaign donations during the last campaign finance period. Republican candidates Ronnie “Bubba” Tullos and Stephen Missick reported no contributions.
Holt was the only candidate who responded to The Texanmeeting request.