ELECTION Q&A: U.S. District 2 House of Representatives candidates discuss flooding, national issues

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Three candidates are running for the U.S. District 2 House of Representatives seat this November, which covers portions of Cy-Fair, Spring, Klein and the Lake Houston area. Community Impact Newspaper asked candidates for their thoughts on flood control and other issues facing the district.

Dan Crenshaw
Party affiliation:
Republican
Occupation: retired, U.S. Navy
Experience: lieutenant commander, U.S. Navy SEAL; military legislative aide for Congressman Pete Sessions; Master of Public Administration, Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government

Top priorities:
flood mitigation, economic growth, border security
Contact information:
832-834-3128
www.crenshawforcongress.com

1. What do you see as the most critical project or initiative to prevent future flooding in District 2?
The most critical need for flood mitigation in Texas’ second congressional district is action. We need action on dredging. We need to begin building a third reservoir and
regional detention ponds. We need to build more Tainter gates in Lake Houston. We need to expedite the studies and take action. My detailed plan for what I will do in D.C. to help mitigate flooding can be found on my website at www.crenshawforcongress.com/flood-policy

2. Aside from flooding, what is the biggest challenge facing the district? How would you address that challenge?
The biggest challenge I see is how to continue to sustain and increase economic growth. The economy is booming. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has kept more money in pockets of workers and job creators. Burdensome regulations, which created barriers to entry and expansion, created by unelected bureaucrats, have been cut back. We must continue these policies so government creates the conditions for entrepreneurs to create jobs.

3. What national issue do you think is of greatest importance for District 2?
As Texans we know all too well the cost of an unsecured border. It is not just an immigration issue, but a national security, economic and humanitarian issue. An open border is not only unsustainable from a judiciary and law-enforcement perspective; it also allows for the exploitation of vulnerable immigrants by coyotes, brutal drug cartels and human traffickers.

Todd Litton
Party affiliation:
Democrat
Occupation: nonprofit executive/consultant
Experience: civil defense lawyer, Hays, McConn; financial adviser, UBS; director, Preschool for ALL; executive director, Citizen Schools Texas; founder and CEO, C Change Consulting
Top priorities: health care and drug prices, infrastructure and flooding, education and jobs
Contact information:
info@toddlitton.com
www.toddlitton.com

1. What do you see as the most critical project or initiative to prevent future flooding in the district? The ballot measure ensured critical investment throughout [District 2] to prevent future flooding and allow federal dollars to flow locally to our district. The most important project will be the third reservoir needed to protect the Cypress Creek and Spring Creek watersheds from future flooding, which we’ve seen in Memorial Day, Tax Day, and Harvey flooding. This project also protects the Addicks area to the south and Kingwood/Lake Houston area to the east. That makes it a maximum point of leverage to prevent future flooding in multiple parts of [District 2] which should put it at the top of the list.

2. Aside from flooding, what is the biggest challenge facing the district? How would you address that challenge?
The rising cost of health care is a major concern for the people in [District 2]. In Congress, I will work across the aisle to allow Medicare to negotiate with drug companies, which should significantly reduce the exorbitant cost of prescription medication for people all across [District 2], our state and our country. I will also work to protect the millions of Americans with pre-existing medical conditions who currently receive affordable health insurance. We can’t go back to the days when those with a pre-existing condition were denied insurance.

3. What national issue do you think is of greatest importance for District 2? The continued work to secure disaster relief funding for our community and build the infrastructure we need to protect our people and our property is the national issue of greatest importance to [District 2]. Our community’s resiliency and ingenuity have not been supported with urgent action. I will work across all lines—district, city, county, state and party lines—to get the resources and action we need now to protect our community from flooding. Thousands of homeowners face uncertainty. I’ll fight to fund projects that protect all of our communities from future flooding.

Patrick Gunnels
Party affiliation:
Libertarian
Occupation: mathematician; cofounder of WhistleAI, a blockchain startup to protect whistleblowers
Experience: I have zero political experience. I am doing this because I don’t trust any other politician to stand up for [President Donald] Trump
Top priorities: support Trump in the House of Representatives
Contact information:
832-253-7460
www.twitter.com/
pgunnels

1. What do you see as the most critical project or initiative to prevent future flooding in the district? I refuse to localize my stances for my district. Any issue that is unique for a particular district should not even be handled by the federal government. So there are two major issues: first, continued federal encroachment of government function
that rightly belongs on the local or state level, and second, the fact that we have a nest of vipers in the House of Representatives who would love nothing more than to stab our president in the back. I will stand right beside Donald Trump in all matters.

2. Aside from flooding, what is the biggest challenge facing the district? How would you address that challenge?
The federal government has no business addressing local issues like flooding. Simply return more of our tax money and let us handle it locally.

3. What national issue do you think is of greatest importance for District 2? Treacherous politicians trying to subvert the will of the electorate by constantly obstructing the president we voted for.

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Vanessa Holt
A resident of the Houston area since 2011, Vanessa began working in community journalism in her home state of New Jersey in 1996. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2016 as a reporter for the Spring/Klein edition and became editor of the paper in March 2017.
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